Signé Barrière n°5 mar/avr/mai 2013
Signé Barrière n°5 mar/avr/mai 2013
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  • Parution : n°5 de mar/avr/mai 2013

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  • Format : (210 x 270) mm

  • Nombre de pages : 100

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english version english version For our British readers, Signé Barrière offers a selection of translated texts in English. Happy Reading ! SigneBarriere_05_05.indd 1 02/04/13 16:07 Fred Le Chevalier « sticks » to life Anonymous, a stepladder over one shoulder and brush in hand, he pastes his cut-out characters on the city's walls. Who is this person who's inventing an art that's both fragile and determined ? It's in Ménilmontant, on this bit of a hill where every morning the sun starts sketching Paris, that Fred Le Chevalier has made a home for his temperament. And his curiosity. And his cat, Brian, so-namedin tribute to the Monty Python team, those crazy Englishmen from the BBC who, in the 1970s, brought the absurd to the British stiffupper lip. The absurd ? Fred Le Chevalier agrees that his artistic approach might bring absurdity to mind. Indeed, why the heck does he cut small figures − always the same − out of paper and go and paste them onto walls ? « So they can go for a walk, because they're alive. » OK... This is only one layer of Le Chevalier's enigmatic carapace. For Le Chevalier is a pseudonym that hides a young 40 year-old man who's nostalgic about the Rouge et Or collection of poetic tales and medieval stories he devoured as a child. His black and white palette creates a dream world in which precise touches of red, green, or polished gold occasionally shine. In his studio flat that's fragrant with a light scent of incense, he uses a chisel and a craft knife to cut out each of the characters soon to be pasted on walls that are « damaged, preferably » and sometimes formdead ends. Anonymously. Le Chevalier is no Zorro, he's not going to sign a C with his pen that says, « I did it. » Why this desire to remain hidden ? « I don't like the exuberance, the glory that street artists seek all too often. I prefer to slip in moments, winks of an eye, to those who are watching, who see, who are passing by. I offer a presence. « A connivance, too ? » « Yes, of course. But that's the icing on the lake, as a funny little girl said tome one day », replies Fred Le Chevalier. The street and its walls are page 6 not his décor  : the street is his medium. Neither painter nor visual artist, he just wants to draw. On a sheet of paper, with the black ink of a pen, he lightly traces the appearance of his characters, who are alone or in loving couples, taken by surprise in 90 | Printemps 2013 - SignéBarrière
english english version their stationary hurry or sketched head-on. There's a touch of Cocteau in the Egyptian eyes of the faces. There's also a reminder of the frescos of Ancient Crete that can be seen in history books. « They're good references », admits Fred Le Chevalier. « But l'm more instinctive than educated. l'm only an amateur in the sense that I like what I do without feeling the need to explain it. » There's no question, for example, of saying any more about the eclectic inspiration he might have found in all the free expressions of the Punk movement − oh yes, he even illustrated a CD cover for the Bérurier Noirs group ! − or in the fragile drawings of an 18 th century English illustrator, the very private Audrey Beardsley ; or in the spectacular ‘happenings’of Ernest Pignon Ernest, the pioneer and daring dandy of wallart, « an enlightener ». Le Chevalier's thing, therefore, is the pernickety cutting out of paper and pasting it onto walls. His drawings can beup to 2.5 metres. « For a long time, I stuck themup during the night. Now, I do it during the day », he says. This intrigues people. Recently a policeman showed me a photo of one of my characters that he'd taken with his mobile phone ! « Posting bills in public places is prohibited  : don't you ever get fined ? » « The legislation is very precise  : paint and graffiti on walls are considered to be defacement. With the drawings I stickup, I only risk fines for unauthorised posting. » And so ? « I carry on sticking themup... » For Le Chevalier, his ‘travelling drawings’are pretexts for urban walks in Paris, Grenoble, Toulouse, Tours, Angoulême - where he was born, Charleville, and also Lausanne, Berlin and Brussels. They are even included in the credits of a film, hailed by the Diane & Lucien Barrière Foundation  : ‘Les petits princes’(*), directed by Vianney Lebasque and featuring Eddy Mitchell. Just like Hansel and Gretel's breadcrumbs, the film tells the story of a young woman who scatters drawings around the streets. It's a story that's both fragile and determined, like Fred Le Chevalier's pencil strokes. (*) In cinemas in July. 50 ways with white Minimalist, sophisticated or neo-Baroque  : white invades women's wardrobes for spring-summer 2013. Why is this ‘chromatic value’colouring fashion, advertising and industrial design ? We were told that, having revitalised the autumn and winter months of the previous year, the colour orange was going to sound the trumpet for spring and summer 2013. We were swooning − quite rightly − before the brilliance and texture of crepe de chine tops. And yet, the Parisian fashion week − just like those in London and New York − was devoted to the ‘total look’in white. Gucci, Vera Wang, Chloé and Givenchy assert what is not just a trend but a determined choice. In clothes that are to be seen or to be revealed. H&M and Cos are also riding on this wave, which is made of more than just frothy foam. White holds a significant place in the history of fashion. It’s said to reveal a time when points of reference and social codes are important, according to research by three very serious academics. Michel Pastoureau, a historian who specialises in the symbolism of colours, knows about all the nuances and all the influences of the colour white. And he also knows how to describe them in simple words. « For centuries », he says in his lectures at the Sorbonne, « all fabrics that came in contact with the body (bed linen, towels, and what is now called underwear) had to be white, for hygienic reasons of course − white was equated with clean ; black with dirty − but also for practical reasons. As fabrics were washed by boiling, particularly those made from hemp, flax and wool, they tended to lose their colour. White was the most stable, hard-wearing colour. » Doubtless no longer a major preoccupation of today's designers, this aspect of the use of white still has an influence on the ‘signal’that wearing white sends out. Those who observe our lives and our desires are absolutely certain on that score. And so it is that more and more men, in response to these fun, psycho-social questionnaires that very serious research organisations include in their catalogue to brightenup their rather unprepossessing image, actually consider that white fabric against female skin is « likely to arouse desire ». It's a reversal and perhaps the end of a taboo  : that of the innocence of the colour white. Or its so-calledrf, i li page 28 blandness. And not only where the body is concerned. Regarding the paint used on cars, white has long been associated with all-purpose commercial vehicles. Today it adorns the most luxurious saloon cars. In the interior decoration and furnishing of kitchens as wellas living rooms, the immaculate colour white is also reclaiming its right of residence. These days, advertisers take possession of what they present as a blank pageupon which everyone can project « the freedom of their wishes and their life in a chosen environment ». This blank page reflects the expression of an era in crisis, where one asserts one's difference without ostentation. With the idea that 100% white = sobriety ? Coco Chanel had her solution  : « White first, the rest follows. » It’s a blank cheque for a chic look. SignéBarrière - Printemps 2013 | 91



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