Quentin Derouet paints with the seasons. Not only do they inspire him, but they also shape the very matter of his works. Always using the power of roses -the ones he planted in his rose garden at the far end of his property in Aveyron in the South of France- he crushes, smashes, rubs, macerates, pours or burns them on canvases he then leaves in the open air. Time does the rest as matter changes slowly, under the influence of the weather, rain and winds dragging the flowers’ pigments.
The interaction is mutual as his works themselves reinvent time. The six large paintings tell moments of harmony with Nature, using fragments of the past from unfinished works. The artist had left them in a corner and rediscovered them, as he moved forward, leaving the sensibility that had once made him look away. Taking a closer look at his old pieces, he was able to cut and remodel them, offering them a new existence, starting a new cycle. “Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed”, said Antoine Lavoisier regarding the conservation of mass, in any change of state of matter. The infamous maxim applies particularly to the work of the rose painter, who brings out the full potential of the flowers.
His large paintings showcase every part of the plant. The soil that fed it forms a vertical line, soaking in the water of the lake, while roots and wood become ashes under the power of fire, and petals, of course, bring out warm shades: pinks, purples, reds. The lying stretches offer reflections reminiscent of ancient stone, cavernous environments, lunar grounds, wine lees, dry blood stains, night skies, moving stars… The macro and the micro seem to reunite in the artist’s tight intertwining of cotton threads. The natural paintings can be seen as an expression of the “theory of everything”, entangling time-space, the four fundamental forces and the origins of the universe. His outstanding abstractions could reflect the very essence of the Big Bang.
The first event of creation, a moment when everything shattered, wrote the first chapters of our world and continues to feed our imagination. What is the origin of everything? How could a single event create so much life? Was it only a question of matter? Or maybe manners? Such questions still lie today at the heart of a rose.
Born in 1988 in Grenoble (France), Quentin Derouet lives and works between Paris and the South of France.