Pascale Labelle, self-taught painter.
ENERGY IN MOVEMENTS
EMOTION (E for energy, MOTION for movement)
In 2009, at age 40, I lived in turmoil. During a meditation, I heard: "Go buy yourself a canvas, a paintbrush and paint". I did what this voice suggested to me.
I paint in acrylic, in an abstract, semi-figurative approach. What I like about abstraction is its total freedom, without any reference point. In my work, for every gesture I ask my intellect and judgment to leave. I want to explore what comes from within.
Self-taught, I do not want any outside influence. That's why I don't want to learn any artistic method. My spontaneous personality pushes me to follow a current of freedom which allows me to discover my deep nature and helps me to assume it completely.
Measurless attracts me.
We recognize my work by the abundant quantity of acrylic that I apply and by the size of their formats. The more paint there is, the more I like it. In each of my painting, we find the features of a face; all the time and since always. For me, it's the best way to express a felt emotion or energy.
My work has two very different steps:
The first is physical;
Colors and energy are dropped on a canvas by impulsive gestures, earphones and music to my ears. My colors are powerful, bold, very dense. My intention is to first create a colored background, on which I spread the paintings directly from their containers. Once the surface is covered with these generous spills, I lift the canvas with my hands to put it upright and then observe the slowly flowing material.
I use spoons too. I like that the jet can come out of the canvas, as if it also lived on the outside of its cotton.
I finish with a spatula. I do not want any restrictive framework limiting movement. The sides of my canvas are part of the work as well; this is where I wipe my spatula, where the paint finishes its way.
The bigger the canvas, the happier I am. I like to notice my fatigue when I spread my texture. I like what the canvas asks me, I like what I give it back. I like to watch all these results during my work. It's beautiful for my eyes. Paint, there is never enough. I empty the pots. I stop when there is no more.
The second stage is contemplative;
Once the canvas is dry, standing, I look at it. I take the time to discover what it wants to tell me. For each gesture, I let it guide me. I
sometimes resists the discomfort, then give it my confidence back again. That's how I paint. That's the only way I know how.
Little by little I will guess the features of a face. First, I see its angle, inclined, often down. I become a witness of its prayer. Then I go to my canvas, small brush in hand; the relationship gains in intensity. It's very emotional, a moment of grace.
With fine lines, I draw what it invites me to express, and allows you to see it to.
The inspiration comes from elsewhere, from a place that is totally foreign to me and where I master nothing. My primary goal is to leave room for this guidance. When abandonment occurs, it is a magnificent high.
That face, do you see it?
Then comes this "Pascale" on my canvas.
It's not my signature, I don't sign that way. It's a presence. It's a 6-years-old girl who starts writing, taking care to put a
space with her finger between each of the letters, as the teacher so well shown her. Applied. It's part of my work. Its presence is as important as the face and the colors.
Is it me?
I do not know, but she needs to exist and I allow her to do so.
Over time, my work has evolved, I have gained confidence. The face is very present for me, but more and more difficult to see, the features are more free. The acrylic is more and more abundant, my work becomes almost structural. My
canvases invite people to touch. When we love, we touch.
I want to allow people a physical contact with my work; give them a personal experience to live, bring them back to basics. Offer them an authentic and not esthetic meeting; a pause, a prayer. For them.
My studio is where I live, I need to see my canvas when I wake up, my work in production, my acrylic on my floor, it's all part of me.
Pascale needs this.
Painting for me is an act of trust and humility. In a society like ours, it's difficult for me to give a way to my intuition and to trust it completely. Often, I would like it to be something else.
For me, art is divine, and spiritual.