Luca Curci talks with Sailev during MIXING IDENTITIES, the third appointment of CANVAS International Art Fair, at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space.
Born in the North of France in 1982, Sailev is a French artist with an unconventional background. As a biologist, he first cemented a business career that would progressively become the catalyst, and the decisive opportunity, to shape in the mind of the emerging artist, a vision of the world that is both poetic and alarming. This thought-provoking vision that explodes of paradoxes unassumingly invades his paintings and lingers in the mind of the viewer. Confronted with the excesses and damage of the industries of modern societies Sailev became enthralled by the beauty of nature and its wilderness during life-changing exploratory trips. He draws from this perplexity, a creative and committed force that imbues his works with the poetry and violence of a benevolent and militant message. His style hypnotically guides the viewer into a contemplative reflection on the natural world. By capturing the beauty and wealth of nature as it rages towards inevitable destruction, he transcends the tragedy of the climate crisis and combines efficiently exuberance of his subject matter and thoroughness of execution. His art is a tool for soft activism that aims to inspire the world in a positive way. Sailev currently resides in Normandy, France. He is a member of several eco artists’ collectives including AFC (Artists For Conservation) and part of the revenues generated by his artworks is donated to environmental NGOs. “I use art to share my intense love for nature, hoping to inspire others. Uplifting humanity to a more balanced and advanced future truly rests in our hands”.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Sailev – We are impressionable beings and art provides us with a space for unlimited stimulation, activation, wonder and surprise. It is a portal for the unconscious of the artist to express itself and for one of the viewers to be called after. For eco-artists like me, nothing beats art when it comes to guiding the viewers to reconsider their agency to the world. That’s why art will play an important role in society as we near an era where habits and codes will necessarily be forced to reinvention.
LC – What are you currently working on?
S – I am super excited about the preparation of my next solo show. It will be presented at the next global summit on the nature of the IUCN in Marseille, France, in September 2021 and it will include about 15 artworks to display the strength and beauty of nature, especially that of forests and its inhabitants.
LC – Which is the role the artist plays in society? And contemporary art?
S – Artists are catalysts to broaden people’s experience and minds faster and further than they would normally do. And consequently, art becomes a source of anticipation. Whether you are impressed or disturbed by it. It can be liked or disliked but the least it will do to you is revealed something and created an emotion. The current society is very emotional with never-ending stimulation means, it’s the perfect time for art.
LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
S – Yes they are. Most of my artworks deal with nature, wildlife, environmental protection and the human predicament. But I always use beauty and abundance to stimulate in a positive way, even though my subject matter is inevitably tragic.
LC – What is your creative process like?
S – My paintings usually come as visions that I quickly sketch on a piece of paper. I then paint them later when in the workshop. As art calls for more art, I usually have these visions when I am already seeing art, either at an exhibition and in the wild contemplating the art of nature.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
S – The theme of the festival comes right on time. There is so much diversity in the world and lessons to learn from every part of it, yet the world is stuck in short-sightedness and lack of wisdom. There is a chance we should seize in the fact that diversity, including biodiversity, has never been so close and available to all and comprehending it will help us go through difficult times.
LC – Can you explain something about the artworks you have in our exhibition?
S – The works I show at the festival are part of a series that I called “Climate encounters”. I was trying to imagine what it would be like if a farm pig had the chance to meet macaws or cow octopuses. Animals can be curious as well as very placid, so these meetings would get very interesting. Nowadays, everything is so close and mixed, in nature but also in societies, we can make very unexpected encounters!
LC – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?
S – The way I see it, ITSLIQUID GROUP provides an opportunity for artists to be displayed in renowned capitals or art cities. If an artist wants to extend his experience to different countries and has not enough gallery representation, the opportunity is interesting.