“A contre courant / Out of step”

Text written for the solo show catalogue edited in 2006, Galerie Alain Le Gaillard, Paris, FR

It is cruel to ask a collector to write about one of his acquisitions (“Le 1er mai 2002” 160 x 220 cm, 2002). Lousy writers, we are often happy to just collect objects or artworks, secretly hoping for a respected entity; at best a work of art, at worst, a simple self-portrait. But sometimes you have to take a stance to defend a body of work that is consciously isolated and solitary. Working against the general trend in contemporary art, which has become academic and petit bourgeois, Julien Beneyton takes the risk of wanting to represent reality, by quickly progressing from popular expression to traditional skill, going as far as preparing his canvases with the same grounds used by old masters. In this, he is a little provocative, or even avant-garde, and I think he knows it because he is undeniably intelligent. In his visual transcription, he gets us to reread what we can no longer see in the scrambled images filtered by our various screens.

Antoine De Galbert

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