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Albert AYME


Albert AYME et Vincent Van Gogh


Par Roger Laporte


Van Gogh, a paradigm for Albert Ayme

Excerpt of Roger Laporte's speech for the colloquium dedicated to Albert Ayme, in the Cerisy International Cultural Centre, and in the presence of the artist. (under Jean Ricardou's direction) 


... / ... Van Gogh the instinctive, the visionary, the prophet, at least according to legend, is explaining to Theo : don't think I would keep myself artificially with a fever, but you must know that I am very busy with a complex calculation which will generate, one after the other, paintings quickly made but thought of well in advance (the underlining is by Van Gogh).

Van Gogh is giving a main importance to the process of intellectual creation, but while using an abstract approach, his painting remains figurative.

Not willing to abandon the primacy of figuration, but yet and at first searching for this high yellow note he finally found, as he said, during summer 1889, Van Gogh is confronted to a contradiction that will receive, and will only be able to receive incomplete and always temporary answers. I will not insist on what has already been very well analysed for a long time : there is an expressive power of colours, and that is how Van Gogh wants to express the love of two lovers a marriage of two complementary colours. In this sense, the most accomplished piece is probably the so rightly best-known The night café in which Van Gogh, with an antithesis of greens and reds,  express terrible human passions. Amplifying not only the colour but also the drawing, Van Gogh justify himself declaring : if we made the colour very correct or the drawing very correct, we wouldn’t create those emotions. The night café is an achievement, but the contradiction between the requirements of painting and those of the figurative art remains. Out of humility, for the sake of nature, of the poorest reality, Van Gogh preferred to be, as he wrote once, a “shoemaker” rather than a “musician in colours”, but then, because he didn't invent the abstract painting, Van Gogh  can be seen as having paved the way for Fauvism and also Expressionism...which I will not defend here. Van Gogh foreshadowed an abstract painting he didn't develop himself, but wasn't he a good visionary when he wrote to Theo : the painter of the future will be a colourist the like of which has never yet been seen, ( it is Van Gogh who underlines : III, 64). In order not to hurt his modesty, I will not name this colourist like of which has never yet been seen  in Van Gogh's times.../ ...


The complete text by Roger Laporte was published in n°11 of the magazine Il Particolare Marseille.


Traduction : Naik M'SILI


Unless otherwise stated, the works presented belong to Giney AYME private collection


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