For 2018’s 2nd edition of the Cabinet de l’Art, a bucolic aura takes place at The Switch: Skoya Assémat-Tessandier’s new exhibition presents a series of small- scale paintings involved with a sublime atmosphere. From 7th of April until 27th of May, visitors of “Le petit Jardin des Songes” can explore a scenario built in the gallery, evoking an oneiric experience leading beyond rational mind’s constraints.

This set of 10 small-scale canvas was inspired by the Dutch Golden Age painting, (17th century), a period through which Artists started to produce paintings of smaller formats to t in salons of more modest houses, and not only in mansions or churches. Started in 2014, this body of works emanated from a very passionate momentum in the Artist’s life. Feeling the latent connection with the Romanticism, a tradition’s revival helped Skoya to embody vivid affections in his works. The resultant series brings elements of Impressionism, Fauvism and Pointillism, with a hidden dialogue between tradition and contemporary art themes. Each composition is raised from a vibrant dotted basis, in which abstraction gains life from the representation of the Artist’s muses – a Baroque heritage. Nevertheless, the exhibition requires an effort that stretches beyond visual enjoyment of classical techniques.

Reveries and illusions also play a role in “Le petit Jardin des Songes”, referenc- ing the romantic belief of adopting dreams as an alternative route to the innermost secrets. With Sigmund Freud’s writings, Artists intensely explored the idea of a subconscious mind as a source of inspiration, forging the depiction of their subjective experiences. Skoya’s paintings trigger color perceptions, like hypnotic trances. In this ritual of transcendence, his inspirational muses dance, pose, rest, and gently doze. Dreams, to the Artist, represent conduits for unspoken feelings and desires, royal roads to knowledge of the unconscious.

Skoya Assémat-Tessandier’s practice can be best comprehended by the ever-present touch of alchemy. His work reflects states of subconsciousness, translated across multiple disciplines such as painting, photography and performance. Since early 2000’s, Skoya devoted himself to create personal techniques, in which intricate textures over ow. His Art embodies “dreams and poems, feelings of love and rage, seasons and celestial bodies, and far beyond”, as he states.

Born and raised in Paris, ‘La Ville-Lumière’, he has lived in many different cities since then: this nomadic life has shaped his artistic influences and repertoire. Works conceived worldwide were presented in New York, Tokyo, Amsterdam and Paris.

Currently living and working in Lisbon, where he opened The Switch in November 2016.

Text by Henrique Menezes