Laurence de Valmy


Laurence de Valmy

Courtesy of the Artist

French-born artist Laurence de Valmy resides and creates her innovative work in Philadelphia. Her latest series of works entitled POST transpires as an astute contemporary reflection on the history of art and asks the question: What if Instagram had always existed? Laurence de Valmy intermingles her profound understanding of art history along with her painting dexterities to appropriate the famous works of arts and disclose their narratives, which are depicted as Instagram posts from a time gone by.

All pieces are made with acrylic and expose an intelligent apposition of an original painting and an illusory dialogue that appears historically precise notwithstanding accents of humor. The appropriation series is acknowledged as the artist’s most personal work to date.

“I’m fascinated by personal stories: how artists were connected with other artists either in their lifetime or through time, which art dealer helped them breaking through, who they loved etc,” explains Valmy. “That’s why I like to say I’m an art-story teller. My goal is to make people consider these iconic works with a new eye by replacing them in their context and invite them in the intimacy of these famous artists. For example, knowing that Gustav Klimt was inspired to create The Kiss by the fashion designer Emilie Floge and that his last words were for her, made me appreciate the painting in a new way.”

Valmy’s decision to illustrate her series via Instagram posts reflects the typical aesthetic of how art is viewed nowadays, depicting modern day methods along with the platform’s “positive attitude” as opposed to various other social media stages.

“My first challenge is to recreate with acrylics, the original artworks, created in oils, pastel or encaustic. My second challenge is to tell the story in few words so emojis and hashtags are all carefully chosen.”

Laurence de Valmy’s paintings will be exhibited in the Museum of Urban and Contemporary Art (MUCA) of Munich in June 2018 and at the Barnes Foundation during the exhibition Let’s Connect (May 21-June 4).

Words by Katie Farley