Olivier DEBRÉ (1920-1999)
Olivier Debré was a French artist born in 1920 in Paris (He died in 1999). He was one of the major representatives of lyrical abstraction, besides Poliakoff, Hartung, Soulages and Nicolas de Staël. His first paintings, made around 1943, reflect the influence of Picasso (whom he met in 1941), but since 1945 he turned towards Chinese abstraction in gouache and ink. He frequented avant-garde artists such as Nicolas De Staël, Serge Poliakoff and Pierre Soulages, what led him to adopt a pictorial technique of several applied colors over thick layers applied with a knife. In 1960, Olivier Debré adopted an intense color palette which will become characteristic of his style later on, a change which was not unrelated to his frequantation of great American abstract expressionist artists like Kline, Rothko, or Olitski. Since then, Olivier Debré shared emotions he felt when facing natural phenomena (storms, typhoons, rivers, particularly the Loire) through strong accents of color and light over fluid colored backgrounds. Since 1965, the artist worked on formats increasingly large and monochromatic, reaching 6 meters in the 80s. He described his painting as “fervent abstraction” because it is the materialization of his emotions. Olivier Debré was the subject of several institutional exhibitions: In 1967, he represented France at the Montreal World Exhibition and in 1995 a retrospective of his work was held at the National Gallery of Jeu de Paume, before traveling through Europe and Latin America. During 1980-90, he was asked for public orders for French Comedy, the Hong Kong Opera, and the Opera House of Shanghai, he decorated as well, the sets for the ballet “Signs” by the choreography of Carolyn Carlson.
Oil on canvas
Signed, dated and titled on the reverse
– 50 x 61 cm (70 x 80 cm cadre inclus)
– 20 x 24 in. (27 1/2 x 31 1/2 in. framed)