We are honoured to present multi-disciplinary artist Lionel Sabatté’s first solo exhibition in Singapore: MIND over MATTER. It is a showcase of the artist’s latest creations in painting, drawing and sculpture through his use and exploration of mysterious and mystical materials. The exhibition will open on November 15, 2018 and the artworks will be on display till December 30, 2018.
Lionel Sabatté is considered as one of the most well respected experimental French artists, producing exceptional works by manipulating matter to levels never seen before. He works in two cities - Paris and Los Angeles. In addition, Lionel has completed numerous residencies throughout the world, for which he has won many awards such as the Laureat Patio Maison Rouge in Paris in 2018 for his concrete sculptures; he was winner of the 2017 Drawing Now award in Paris for his drawings made of oxidized iron ink; and in 2011 he won the Yishu 8 award in Beijing, which led him to do a solo where several of his most iconic tea sculptures were displayed and sold.
During Mind over Matter, Lionel will introduce the Singapore audience to some of his most renowned animal sculptures, for which he has purposely chosen materials, often discarded by humans, to give life to new shapes and textures. These include: dust that he collects from the Paris metro, clipped nails, tea leaves from Yunnan (China) and concrete. To Sabatté, matter breathes life and his works raise the question of existence on an evolutionary level.
The highlight of the exhibition is a Unicorn that the artist has sculpted from Pu’er tea leaves of Yunnan province, China. Lionel had not produced a single tea sculpture since his first tea sculpture which garnered wide acclaim during its debut in 2015 at his solo exhibition ECHAFAUDAGE D’UN PRINTEMPS in Yishu8 House, Beijing, China. For his Singapore solo-show, he agreed to explore this material again and produce this absolute masterpiece. Lionel is intrigued by the biological aspect of the Pu’er tea, with its required fermentation process which for him refer to time, transformation and process – values that he wants to impose to this mystical creature.
Sabatté does not stop there. He ventures deeper into the exploration of material fluidity through his paintings -- challenging the chemistry between various mediums/minerals on canvas. The artist believes that all matter are malleable for experimentation.
These non-representational paintings delineate a slow and harmonic motion of integration between the deposits. In other words, the painting orchestrates the evolution of its own being into existence. Void of any human guidance, the sublime shapes and transcendental miracles are rich in imaginative interpretations. Some will see aquatic creatures, whereas other will see flying birds. The artist explains,
“My paintings are unknown forms of life in non-identified universes,
whether subaquatic or microscopic,”
Indeed, these works produce an ambience of contemplative calmness that matches a poetic universe. Perhaps that is what we shall all agree upon, as we venerate their organic compositional power in awe and bear witness to the flow of time captured during the process of creation.