In New Prints, Christopher Le Brun Channels “Serious Matters in a Playful Vein”
n France in the early 19th century the award of the Prix de Rome by the École des Beaux-Arts depended on an annual competition. As well as the Prix de Rome for History painting a prize for Historical Landscape was instituted in 1817. The examination was tri-partite. The first stage required the execution of an esquisse (sketch study). The second stage, named Concours de l'arbre, lasted six days, during which the contestants painted, in isolation and from memory, a picture that featured a tree as its dominant motif and a narrative subject in which the figures had to be "at least four inches in height". The final stage was the painting of a finished historical landscape, the subject determined in advance by the jury.
Publisher: Paupers Press, London
Citing Romanticism and Symbolism among his inspirations, as well as musical compositions, literature, and his own materials, Christopher Le Brun produces expressive paintings, prints, and sculptures that range from abstract to representational. Working from intuition and with intention, he reveals his process and his hand in everything he makes. “At least half, if not more, of the driver of my work is the engagement with materials,” he has said. For his sculptures, he works in bronze and relies on motifs that include horses, wings, and semi-abstract forms suggesting human figures. He paints in oils and watercolor, building up his compositions with visible layers and brushstrokes. Rather than honing a particular style, Le Brun prefers to challenge himself with new projects and approaches.
British, b. 1951, Portsmouth, United Kingdom, based in London, United Kingdom