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From the Studio: Valerie Jaudon

Larghetto (in progress), 2020. Oil on linen, 54 x 54 inches.


Over the past few months, DC Moore Gallery has been providing inside views into how our artists continue their practices to create new works of art, while sharing perspectives of their current, everyday lives. We are excited to continue this initiative and welcome your thoughts about these features, as we hope they will bring together our friends, families, and colleagues. 

From Valerie Jaudon:

While much in my life (and of course the lives of countless others) has been changed by the pandemic, my studio practice seems to have continued on its own path, at its own pace, with its own unvaryingly varying mix of gratifications and frustrations.

The first stages: drawing, planning, thinking, re-thinking, reading, talking, staring at the paper, engaging, drawing some more, seeing how the whole ongoing interconnected project fits together, or at least ought to. Which always leads to: what should I change, what should I keep, what can I push further? This is the exciting part, but also the fraught one.

It’s not that each work is a complete unknown territory. I never sit down in front of a canvas and just paint. I have been pursuing a particular way of thinking and making for some time, so that, like it or not, each work becomes a facet of something larger – an index of an especially complex linear, diagrammatic, and referential geometry. The reference shifts over the years – music, language, architecture, the decorative. Making it coherent yet always open to change is part of the working process: I have to keep things moving.

Once I complete the task of getting the drawing onto the canvas at full scale, then I can relax and just paint. 

It’s technically and often physically demanding, but I enjoy it and the end product is always a bigger surprise than I would have expected.

I would like to say that my surroundings are important to my work, just as I might like to say that the quality of light influences me. I have a peaceful studio in East Hampton, which has lovely clear light that bounces off the water that surrounds us, and of course I love it. Who wouldn’t? But the work I make here is not all that different than the work I have produced over the years in a variety of city studios, some light-filled and spacious, some darker and smaller than I would have preferred. The work is the work and, in many ways, I tag along for the ride.

I have been out here in East Hampton since March, and it has been a real pleasure to see the seasons and nature around me change incrementally. 

I have built a new studio and storage building that gives me extra working room. It is really quiet and a joy to work in, and when I step outside, I am happy to be in a lovely shady green space.

But I also miss my new apartment in Jackson Heights, with its beautiful block-long garden and the incredibly lively and optimistic neighborhood that surrounds it, and I look forward to spending more time there in the coming months. I have some work in progress there and I would very much like to make its acquaintance again.

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