Black is the horses and bison sketched in black charcoal in the Lascaux caves 15,000 years ago. It is Goya and his Disasters, it is Picasso and Guernica with its blacks intermingled with grey, it is Barnett Newman and his monochromes, among the first in history. It is Soulages and Tapiès soon after, and then Franz Klein and Motherwell… But it is also, closer to home, Riopelle and McEwen, Louise Robert and John Heward, François-Xavier Marange and Serge Clément, without forgetting to mention Irene F. Whittome with her deep-black encaustics.
The exhibition La matière noire (Black Matter) brings together some twenty works which present every shade of black. If, as Kandinsky remarked, “Black has an inner sound of nothingness bereft of possibilities”, in this exhibition we will explore its depths.
David Nash, Black Dome, 2009, charcoal on paper, 70 x 100cm
Courtesy Galerie Lelong / Photo Fabrice Gibert