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Kim Corbisier – je marche dans la rue

Curator(s):Kapronczai Erika
Artist(s):Kim Corbisier
Venue: Project Space
Opening:06/02/2023 18:00 (Fri)
Duration:06/05 - 07/20/2023

Opening hours

Wednesday – Friday15:00 – 19:00

I first saw Kim in a film. Then I contacted her because of a film, and the apropos of our short acquaintance was also shooting a film. Indeed, I came to know her as a painter only later. And in fact, I approach her painting through cinema too.

What initially caught my attention was her extraordinary character, creative look, photogenic and vibrant personality. Then, discovering her paintings, I was stunned to reencounter their maker in them – with all her fire, spontaneity and powerful presence. While painting her large canvas with effortless grandeur, she was also meticulous in working out certain details. An unrestrained outpour of strong emotions as well as deep observation and sharp insight equally characterise her work.

Along with her character and attitude, Kim’s passion for the cinema is also markedly present in her paintings. The eyes, people’s look she captured in a bustling street, passing everyday moments and the dynamics of the pictures inevitably evoke associations with the film as a medium. Her paintings are movie scenes, with the human being in their focus. Stories about the human condition, relationships and destinies. These fallible characters speak to us, sometimes even look straight into our eyes, draw us straight into their stories, reveal their depths, making it impossible for us to just pass by them. At the same time, it is also impossible to spend much time with them. The moment a character or situation comes into the focus or a life story starts to unfold, the viewer is immediately swept on by the current of the street.

The very texture of the paintings also resembles celluloid frames. Some of their parts look as though they were burnt out, like in an overexposed photo. They resemble when you have to squint in the strong summer sun, and you see only the sharpest silhouettes or outlines of a scene. A figure or a face flashes up for a moment, just to fade out almost immediately. This clears these everyday situations of the big city’s smog and dirt, the surface rips open and the light shines through the transfigurations of the ephemeral current. A colour flares up for a moment, outlines of a figure emerge for a blink of an eye, a look flashes up just fade into the white glow. Through all this, Kim grasps something about the essence of existence. Of course, her method was not based on some kind of philosophy or intellectual consideration. She simply painted the way she experienced the world.

The cinematographic traits result not only from Kim’s particular intertest but also from her creative method. She loved the world of the cinema, being in front of and behind the camera, observing the world around her through the lense in the streets of Brussels, Marseille or Budapest. She chose the characters for her paintings from the footage she had recorded, then she projected them on the canvas, and painted or drew them. These footages also found their way into her video works.

The works in this exhibition build up into one large metropolitan milieu. The pictures are arranged according to the cinematographic principles of editing (correspondences in the directions and angles of gazes, likeness in dynamics, colours, lines, etc), while also adding up loosely to present the periods in the artist’s life-work, and demonstrating the stages of Kim’s creative process, from live shots to photographs, sketches, montages, to paintings.

This exhibition offers an opportunity to walk down Kim’s streets and witness closely the little stories she recorded. And in those stories she also tells us about herself.

(Erika Kapronczai)