Are we always alone together. Can we mind our own business. How fragile are we. How little is enough. How much can you subtract before collapse. Restless bodies and souls. Communication break-down. Intimate and intricate. What when words don’t suffice?

Coline Marotta explores these themes in paintings and drawings in her solo exhibition Big Love Low Ceiling. Characters rendered in a light and warm palette – often greens, blues and shades of pink - perform mundane activities such as sleeping, yoga, looking and yawning. Painted with a seemingly fluid and natural flow, the protagonists can hardly fit the confinements of the canvas, their large hands stretching or reaching out, bodies contorted with uneasiness (Almost Fitting, 85x70 cm, 2018, and Still Not Fitting 85x70 cm, 2018). The persons have an air of tristesse. They do not appear sad, or weighed down by sorrow, they feel lost in translation. In a state of contemplative summer blues.

The persons in the paintings are somebody and everybody. They are together and alone. Entwined in themselves and others. Tranquil and restless. Rendered with elementary lines and patterns that evoke the late Matisse. There is a sense of the unspoken in the works, an unanswered question lingering, a sentence never completed. A sense of loss and beauty. A beauty in the breath of the unspoken. That we can only feel or transform into art. The works feel genuine, intimate and imbued with empathy. The compositions are delicate, barely holding themselves together, as if work and feeling have become one. Small painterly gestures are used to give life, just enough information is conveyed for our brains to respond. We recognize ourselves.

Coline Marotta, born 1991 in southern France, currently lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark. She holds a MFA from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. Big Love Low Ceiling is Marotta’s first exhibition with V1 Gallery.