Influences and artistic approach

Excerpts from the catalogue of the exhibition Mise au Point, Anton Meier Gallery Geneva, March 1990, text by Soreya Hestermann Azarmsa


The paintings of Philippe Lagrange, although figurative, are not stories. Each painting is a whole, a world in itself. This painting has its own language and functioning. The technique of flat tints, the concise drawing meet the need to develop a clear, “clean” painting. Thus the artist manages to better distance himself from his subject and also forces the spectator to operate what he likes to call “hygiene of vision” a), or learn to see beyond the primary form. If unusual effects are tolerated, such as pencil lines, hatching or a pointillist technique, it is because these means correspond to a definite idea.

In the painting of Philippe Lagrange, we find nods to neo-classical painting, David in particular, as well as to that of Max Ernst, Duchamp, the impressionists, the cubists or engraving and 18th century painting. Archaeology, the world of advertising, a whole symbolism extracted from everyday life, a part of esotericism: everything fills the spirit of the painter, eager to make the best use of the means of painting. Because only painting can lead him on the hard path of Knowledge. For the artist, there is no beyond possible except through painting. “if there is transcendence in the individual, it passes through mediums of this kind”.

Soreya Hestermann Azarmsa