Patricia Dreyfus is a French and Swiss citizen born in Dakar (Sénégal) in 1951 and living in Berlin since 2012.
Her video “Insomnia” is currently on heavy rotation on ikonoTV. We have chosen it to start a series of fresh new excerpts from our programs on this blog.
Words from the ikono curators team:
The interesting features of this video are in the unconventional and lyrical way of showing the artist’s process. The “time” defined by an artist is often surrounded by the mystery of the collective imagery, its representation is based on stereotypes. How can we “show” the creative process and its development in time? Is it possible to film “ideas” ?
The suspended, oniric time-space dimension of the night, when the turmoil of daily life seems to slow down and freeze, in this case seems to be the best “frame” to show Patricia Dreyfus’s vision. Through the deforming lens of darkness the viewer is able to glimpse at these distant, evocative figures taking shape on paper.
Patricia Dreyfus – Insomnia
A lyrical video portrait of the creative process of the artist during the night.
You can visit Patricia Dreyfus at her studio in Berlin on the 8th of december between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. for “Tag der offenen Tür im Atelierhaus 79″ , Wilhelminenhofstrasse 83-85, 12459 Berlin Schöneweide.
Book at amazon.de : Insomnia
From the Publisher: The group Insomnia led by artist Patricia Dreyfus would seem to be obsessed with the human face, as they examine all the potential representations of the head, all the revelations and secrets the form holds in its countless artistic and realistic manifestations. In sculpture as well as in drawings and photographs, Dreyfus explores the timeless fascination of facial expression. Over the course of the years Patricia Dreyfus has created more than one thousand sculptures of the head, all so small that they fit in the palm of the hand, in this way accumulating a kind of archive of the human countenance. In their similarities with talismans or fetish or voodoo dolls they create a link to the realm of the mystical and witchcraft. Such elements are also to be found in the photographs, which depict family members and friends together with the sculptures, thus serving as a kind of intermediary between the viewer and the object being viewed.
(Publisher: Benteli Verlag/Switzerland)
More videos by Patricia Dreyfus
Shared Life / La vie partagée (2012)
I often draw at night, half awake. The main subject of my drawings is Woman [or: the female being]. The lines seem dictated by an interior hand, light, funny, un-reflected, linked to the world of the dream, but also marked by the impressions of my present life and of my childhood spent between two brothers, of my own age. I explore the entangled paths of the feminine universe, which sometimes is dark and unjust, with irony and poetry, and without any constraints. (Patricia Dreyfus)
War Memories Reinvented (2009)
One day, by chance, I discover old photos album in the attic of the house of my father’s family. I never knew anything either about his life or about his family’s life during the last world war… I had not been born at that time and I had never been told anything about that time.
I reinvented a memory using the photos taken by my uncle in a camp of aviators, during the War
Beyond my family’s actions during those times and beyond “History”, in a field where almost everything has sunk into oblivion or has been tarnished, this exhibition allows me to convey my emotions, partially distancing myself from a historic reality that I did not experience. I wanted to do it with my tools: the heads I sculpt, the photo-paintings (based on original photographs) that I create on computers, and a video.
Red is the dominant colour.
It is a crimson-vermilion red: symbolizing violence, passion, but also affection.
It is an attempt to understand the incomprehensible history and to become part of it through compassion and fraternity.
The project is arranged into three complementary visual moods.
It consists of some large, computer processed pictures, a composition with small sculpted heads and a video.
Blue Vision (2006)
Different disciplines are at play in the work of Patricia Dreyfus — sculpture, drawing and photography — yet no one of these would be conceivable without either of the others. Dreyfus’s sculptures, for instance, crop up in her drawings and her photographic series, emerging both as part of their composition and as a vehicle of meaning. The theme the artist treats from a variety of perspectives can always be distinguished, whatever medium she uses. It concerns the depths of our subconscious, our sense of loss, fear and pain. And it explores ways of enlisting poetry and understated humour in an attempt to distance ourselves from our own vulnerability. Text: Dagrun Hintze