Like so many greats of Modern painting, artist Jean Louis Pauly cites the formative influence of the spectacular sunlight of the south of France, where he was born and still lives. But his work eschews the Post-Impressionism of Cézanne or Matisse for a Surrealist style closer to Salvador Dali and Giorgio De Chirico, juxtaposing disparate landscape elements rendered in crayon with vast monochrome fields of acrylic paint. This striking contrast creates the uncanny impression that landscape elements like castles, trees, buildings and boats appear to be floating on pure color, as if navigating a two-toned ocean of paint.
Pauly’s canvases conjure a sense of profound spatial dislocation that resonates with a contemporary audience whose attention is ever more divided. His combinations of iconic monuments, pastoral settings, windswept skies and bands of abstract, flat color mix visual cues and aesthetic styles for an effect that is at once evocative and otherworldly. Each wondrously surreal dreamscape subverts expectations, offering both richly detailed drawings and seductive swaths of layered paints.