PARIS. FRANCE. MARCH 11, 2021.
My name is Clément Mancini I was born in Thionville, a little city in the east of France, in 1988. I now live and work in Paris. My work is really inspired by the vibration of the city and what surround me in my everyday life.
Tell us your story, how did you come to painting?
I always liked drawing but my attraction for painting really started with graffiti, a little over a decade ago. I immediately liked the freedom to paint on different supports and especially on a large scale. How the movement of the body will impact the line, make it vibrate. The notion of “gesture” is very important in this practice and still plays a key role in my current work. It also helped to educate my eye in the balance of the composition and the choice of colors or materials.
How would you define your current painting?
I like to develop my work and explore different subjects. I would say that currently my paintings tend towards something more raw and minimal.
Tell us about your style and technique. Any secret that can be told?
As I said previously, I like to explore materials, for the past two years I have explored plaster on canvas. For that process I used raw cotton canvas which absorbed the plaster as I spread it. I needed a rather liquid plaster to be able to put it on the canvas laid on the ground. Then I used a spatula to lay out the material on the surface. When plaster is dry the work of the color intervenes, I apply the first layer of color with a spatula and intentionally let appear random surfaces of plaster and canvas. This defines the base of my composition.
Recently, I started working with rust, I use rusty plates and scratch them directly on the support to dye the canvas. This process allows me to approach the material differently and establish a continuity with my plaster work. I intend to develop this process in the coming months. I always seek to explore more materials and possibilities.
How do you usually start your paintings? With a sketch, a draft or is it just an improvisation?
I like to start on canvas and let myself guided by spontaneity. The gesture, impulsive, causes errors, erasures, recoveries. All those steps will constitute me in fine pieces. What interests me in this approach is not knowing where I take my canvas, the freedom of the unknown.
What are your motivation forces? And the artists who have been and are an influence for you?
My greatest motivation remains the desire to explore and discover new techniques that I could work with to develop my various projects. The Cobra and Surface Supports movements are also important to me. I also particularly like painters who are part of the second generation of the abstract expressionist movement such as Robert Motherwell, Joan Mitchell, Helen Frankenthaler or Clifford Still.
What can you tell us about your studio, what kind of place is it?
I am currently in an artistic residency at Villa Belleville in Paris and I am lucky to have a very beautiful workspace, it is a very quiet and perfect place to work, to think about new techniques. It was also during this residency that I was able to develop this rust technique.
What is art for you?