Interview – Florence Laprat

Florence Laprat will be a part of the “Close Up” event this 19th and 20th of May and will exhibit her different works only for you!  Florence is studying in La Cambre Art School in Brussels.

What’s your formation and background?

When I finished high school I started law studies, which I pursued for four years. I then decided to start an Art school, La Cambre ENSAV in Brussels.

How and when did you decide to become an artist? Are your parents in this community there too?

Well, I cannot say it is really a decision to become an artist. I would say it is a necessity. When I was a child I used to draw everywhere, and it was the only way my parents found to calm me down. I never stopped, and it scared me at first to take this path, because I was not self confident. My parents come from a very political and quite « traditional » background, and although they are open-minded, it took me a little while to free myself of what I’ve always known. I was only seventeen and there was something reassuring about following the «so-called» safe profession at the beginning. But soon, it became terribly restrictive and boring. So I stopped my studies and started everything again.

What are your artistic influences?

There are various artists whose work i admire. But I try not to rely on this knowledge because it leads you in a particular direction even unconsciously sometimes. If I have to cite them, I would say that for the moment they are Yves Klein, Giuseppe Penone, Donna Huanca, Edith Dekyndt, Claudio Parmiggiani, Fabrice Samyn, Pierre Huygues, Marina Abramovic…

We see that you’re working with a lot of materials, why this choice? With what material do you prefer to work?

I do not have a particular medium, because I often work by creating metaphors. I like working with materials that are connotated in general knowledge, and put them in a certain context, or act on them in a certain way that will disturb our perceptions. So I do not have a favorite material, I think about the concept and what inspired me, then I choose a material and analyse its popular meaning and its physical properties. And the long phase of testing begins…

We can see that you speak a lot about the report at the time and memory in your works. What do you want to express exactly speaking of these two topics?

I am interested in the tracks of things. When something happened, what is left from that, the memory of our bodies, how emptiness and absence can be re-materialised, and represented. In religions, spirituality and faith-which are by essence immaterial- are often represented through objects and icons. I find it interesting to create my own sacred world of objects and shapes. I am also working on the ephemeral character of things and how one needs to grant so much importance to certain things although it is so fragile and ever-changing.

How would you describe your artistic world in 3 words?

Finite because every piece I make will end. Infinite because the unknown is. And fragile.

Are you ever running out of creativity?

Sometimes I am. But when it is the case, I try to provoke creativity. It does not always work. But I am convinced that we can act on it. It is about exercising your brain in a certain way. You analyse when you are the most creative and try to understand why. And then you try to put yourself again in this situation even if you have to force yourself.

What is the work you’re most proud, which “represent” you the most and why?

I am proud of every piece during a very short period. When something is done I want to discover others. And I am against a certain sentimentalism leading you to keep every single stroke you paint as if it was a treasure. Everything changes. And I change too, so every piece grows in a context.

What is your artist dream and what makes it difficult to achieve (or rather simple to achieve?)

May be to make people dream, reach a contemplative state… If I do not succeed I have probably failed something. It is difficult because I am convinced that the simplest gestures are the strongest ones. And reaching simplicity is probably the hardest thing to do.

What is the most rewarding for you in your job?

When you had a very precise and sudden vision of something that does not exist, and you gave it a material existence. It is close to the state of fascination that children have the very first time they see something.

Do you have plans for the future?

Yes, I am finishing La Cambre Art School and then I will probably be going abroad for some residencies. But everything is open…

 

Don’t hesitate and go check her website for more information!

“Close Up” 

Friday 19th of May / 4pm-10pm / 5€

Saturday 20th of May / 2pm-10pm / 8€

Weekend pass / 10€

Musée Juif de Belgique / Joods Museum van Belgïe
Miniemenstraat 21, 1000 Brussel (Zavel/Sablon)

Click here for more information