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Chapter 6

L’Equation du Somnambule

Julien Auregan 


24 September 2021
Auregan’s practice is focused on the possibilites of painting within the issues of identity and it’s ever changing states. He is mainly interested in language as a vessel for bringing antagonist point of view in the process. Therefore, the work welcomes sketch ideas as more complexplastic protocole, building a visual cryptic exploration that inevitably leads to the impossibility of reducing Auregan’s work to an intelligible and synthetic image.

L’équation du somambule is an attempt to probe this shifting system of thought at work in the pictorial experience.




Julien Auregan

It would be tempting to describe the work of Julien Auregan (born in 1989, France) by an exhaustive enumeration of the mediums used or by the description of recurrent systems of signs. However, it seems that such a statement goes precisely against a practice as transversal as the artist’s process. Painting is no longer considered as a representation, but rather as a plastic translation of external elements. These elements, whether sensory or rational, draw their source from a diversity of mediums and references, summoning a logic of collage.

The hybridity of the pictorial language leads ineluctably to the impossibility of reducing the work of Auregan to an intelligible and synthetic image. An invitation to unscramble emerges.

The series presented at 10N Brussels, L’équation du somnambule includes eight paintings on wood, of equal size, all linked by a moving pictorial system. Each painting leads to another one, thus operating a displacement of the glance in the various approaches implemented. Representing abstract spaces, the structures produced are like the sleepwalker who - wandering in a space without knowing it - produces a parallel sensorial reality.

Through the superposition of material elements and juxtaposed plastic operations, Auregan reconstructs, extends and manipulates the traditional conception of the «painting» by subverting existing genres and hierarchies, opposing any narrative will to assert itself as a plastic and physical gesture. These images are incorporated into an ensemble as a material in its own right. Auregan creates a cryptic language, whose components are interdependent and organised in a fragile and syntactic balance. Each gesture resolves the previous gesture and creates a new «problem» whose solvency imposes itself. One could compare each of these plastic operations to letters composing sentences, with signifiers varying according to the context in which they are enounced. The statement thus produced, is similar to a proposal, a production of language, in mutation, well beyond the static object.

The work of Julien Auregan seems to be part of a logic of resistance. At a time when any thought, whatever it may be, ultimately takes the form of an image and is communicated according to the same generic form, the quest for meaning is essential. Between extreme lucidity and amnesic journey, the equation of the somnambulist is a perceptive enigma. Its impossible resolution refers ineluctably to our biased relationship to the image, but also to our condition, dependent on higher structures and impalpable multi-temporal realities.

Text by Florence Laprat

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