VISIONARY REVUE


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FRANCOIS SCHLESSER
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      Finally, in the landscapes of Francois Schlesser we move beyond the horizon of the earth and into the stars themselves. The earth, whose many secret places offered such fascination for other landscapists, now becomes an invisible speck amid the myriad of stars and planets.
      In the endless expanse of outer space, these galaxies swirl, cluster or explode, forming incredibly huge patterns of light in the heavens. Most emblemmatic of Schlesser's vision is the swirling vortex, where the multitude of astroids find cohesion and unity in an invisible source of blinding light.
      "My painting is a celestial symphony which we do not hear but see," the artist says. "It's like music for the eyes." (82)
      Just as a Romantic may lose himself in Nature, so does Schlesser see the cosmos as a space in which we may selflessly immerse ourselves: "Painting is like a magic-mirror which reflects the infinite. The less the personality leaves its traces on the mirror, the more the infinite reveals itself." (83)
      And yet, the artist has written about certain mystical experiences where, on the contrary, the self has expanded to the very limits of the universe. These experiences evoked memories and re-actualizations of his own childhood:


 
 
 


PARIS - FALL 2004


The Jade Door


      "I remember a world which could communicate the mysteries of life to me. This world was 'my world' - the world of my inner child. It was a world which guided me to those places where I had to go - where joy was at its peak. I felt the planet and its multitude of life. I became the world all by myself. I became everything - even the infinite, if I wanted to. Then, I returned to myself, that marvellous little child who spoke with the snails, the stones and the sand, breathing a universe of a thousand marvels." (84)
      Such experiences have returned to the artist during certain rare moments. And it is in these experiences that we find the ultimate inspiration for his works.
      "Then came the accelerations," Schlesser recalls. "I quite liked these accelerations, particularly when they came by surprise. They came, above all, when I was happy - hundreds of millions of stars exploding inside of me and everything accelerating. That moment, I understood everything that I needed to know - immediately - and as intimately connected to happiness itself... I remember the indescribable joy of knowing the essence of all things. All became clear to me during those illuminations. I understood that all things we call 'real' are a part of the totality. And when it slowly dissolved, I found my everyday joy once more. But my happiness now transcended itself - for I had come to know the heavens." (85)


 
 
 


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