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GÉRARD STRICHER

Gérard Stricher's artistic journey, rooted in self-taught mastery and a rich tapestry of life experiences, began to flourish in the 1970s. His transition from a successful industrial career to a full-time painter allowed him to channel his extensive travels and cultural encounters into vibrant canvases. Known for his dynamic use of color and emotive compositions, Stricher's work captures the essence of his varied landscapes and personal reflections. His art, featured in prestigious collections like the Empire Bank and the Pepsi Cola Foundation, resonates with a broad audience, showcasing a profound blend of life's inspirations and artistic dedication.

BIOGRAPHY

BIOGRAPHY

Born into a family of artists in Sarrebourg, Moselle, in 1948, Gérard Stricher began painting in the 1970s, when he was still an engineering student in Paris. He moved in art circles and found buyers and encouragement for his work, but his interest in the industrial field shifted his path to an international career in management. He became a "world citizen," absorbing landscapes and cultures from all corners of the globe, an influence that would later be reflected in his work.

 

He led a hugely successful executive career until he eventually moved back to painting in 2003. Stricher is adamant that his career and its world travel opportunities have shaped his art uniquely, allowing him to view many different cultures and artistic trends beyond that he was raised with, which greatly widened his scope of style.

In 2004 he bought an old mill in the Vexin region of northwestern France, where he set up his studio and began working intensely: this was a new adventure centered totally on his painting. Influenced by the nature surrounding
him, Stricher’s work focuses on abstract explorations of color. Conscious of the land surrounding his workspace, Stricher describes le Vexin as “offering a unique quality of light and diversity of landscapes.”

Though many would describe his work as abstraction, Gérard Stricher himself believes there is no such thing. Each painting created is a work of a living being who is present in nature; the work reflected onto the canvas is therefore influenced by the artist’s own unconscious impulses. Much of Stricher’s work can be rooted to his prolonged intrest in the School of Cobra Painters: Appel, Lindström, Jorn, etc. Pushing his research in this direction has led him to
discover the true power of pure color and material. However, little planning is done in preparation for his paintings, they rely on his spontanious emotions and instinctual color parings.

“My gestures in the act of painting do not follow the inputs of the brain, often my hand makes gestures that rationality does not command, it is the great mystery, the journey into the unknown...”

An exhibition at Espace Commines in Paris in 2007 clinched his reputation with collectors and galleries: his pictures received an enthusiastic reception at the Bartlow Gallery. in Chicago and his American career really took off with a one man show at Art Chicago. He was also shown by the Artbox Gallery in Indianapolis. His paintings were subsequently acquired by the Empire Bank in Springfield, Missouri, the PepsiCo Foundation in New York and various prestigious private collectors in the United States, including Bob Bohlen.

 

These successes were followed by exhibitions at Galerie Protée and Galerie Schwab Beaubourg in Paris. 2012 saw Stricher on display at Laura Rathe Fine Art in Houston and Dallas, and at Galerie Lindengrün in Vienna (Austria).In 2013 he exhibited at Galerie Mézières in Auvers-sur-Oise, and the following year at Galerie Kellermann in Düsseldorf and Galerie La Véluze in Honfleur. After winning the Dizart Editions competition in 2015 and being rewarded with a monographie, he has just shown at MM Gallery in Brussels. Mid 2017 he joined the Gallery Protée in Paris. During 2020 he joined Judy Ferrara Gallery in Chicago and the Taylor Fundation in Paris. In 2021 he joined Galerie l'Atelier in NYC.

SELECTED WORKS

CONVULSIVE LANDSCAPES

A man possessed, Gérard Stricher starts out with elemental outlines, telluric lines of force and prodigious flows of mental lava. Then throws away the key to the codes. Van Gogh, CoBrA and the archaic powers of forgotten countries are summoned up. Brief life and insane health: between the two a fiery art triggers our affective landscape. Close-up on the originary upsurges. The old world has to be remade. Real life is already always there.

 

Part invisible figuration, part embodied abstraction, extreme tensions driving creative chaos offer sovereign incantations of space. Singularly plastic structures emerge. And landscapes of immensity took horizons into the far distance. Working at his primal earth-matter from within, Stricher rips the picture surface. A fiery, untamed notation of disfigurement in the salutary no man's land of precluded meaning. Shredded space of a ceaselessly hacked art.

 

Stricher's devastated landscapes are arrested blinding insights. The fever of the deeps pervades these explosive chromatics and visionary upheavals. Frenetic pre-world landscapes bare of all cultural landmarks sabotage the inertia of reality and take root in the throes of desire. A strange sacrificial energy. In this art of brawling and battling the sources of the picture surface exult. The veins of the earth's deep blood are its pathways to the universe.

 

An earth-dweller to be reckoned with, Stricher comes on with a luminously barbarous art, one exulting in a primal well-being suffused with the devouring immensity of life and barely tamed magma. He tests out the solar vigour of those vital transgressions that sweep away our lives and our voids. His painting plots a course between stark chromatic planes and unyielding structural signs, between the breathing of buried flesh and a labyrinth of unsparing signs, between stylistic monumentality and the shamanically "charged".

 

Here and there, though, are tiny, delicate touches imbued with infinite sensitivity. Here and there Gérard Stricher releases masses of psychic oxygen into a space spattered with carnal profundities.

 

— Christian Noorbergen

IN THE WORKSHOP: VIDEO

VIDEOS
SELECTED WORKS
CONVULSIVE LANDSCAPES
ON LOCATION

IN THE STUDIO