Philippe Pasqua (French, b.1965) is a self-taught painter and sculptor with a penchant for capturing the fleeting nature of mortal existence. He was born in Grasse, France. The artist paints nudes and facial portraits, and he also creates sculptures using materials such as human skulls and dried butterflies. All of his works tend to highlight the ugliness behind beauty, the profanity in the midst of reverence, and the eventual helplessness of the powerful. This motivation accounts for his selection of subjects. Disabled individuals, Down's syndrome sufferers, and transsexual candidates prepped for surgery all find their way to Pasqua's canvasses.

Given his frantic brushstroke style and preference for black and blue shades, the artist’s portrait subjects can look as though they have been beaten, though Pasqua leaves the viewers to form their own interpretations. Clementine is one such example of this portrayal. Likewise, Pasqua represents animals in a solitary setting, as though abandoned, exemplified by his 2009 oil painting entitled Purdey. Also an accomplished pencil drawer, Pasqua focuses primarily on faces: some disturbed, others depressed, and still others frightened. Laura is a drawing of a mentally handicapped woman who—as the artist's website suggests—Pasqua may have known personally. The artist’s interest in skulls is manifest in his sculpted works. Whether gilding them with gold or tattooing them, Pasqua makes human destiny clear to all who will look upon his skulls.

Although he did not intentionally plan to follow an artistic tradition, Pasqua is said to be firmly planted in Vanitas. This artistic movement, represented by Damien Hirst (British, b.1965), stresses emptiness and the shallow, temporary nature of life's pleasures. Since 1990, Pasqua has exhibited his works all over the world. Beginning with the Maison des arts de Beausset in France, his art has travelled to Paris, Barcelona, Brussels, and Hamburg. In February 2012, Pasqua brought his skulls, comprising his Vanities series, to London's Opera Gallery. Lucian Freud (British, 1922–2011) once said, "The role of the artist is to disturb the human being." Critical acclaim suggests that Pasqua fills that role adequately. His representatives include Patrick Painter, Inc. of Santa Monica, CA. Pasqua lives in a suburb of Paris.

Timeline

1965
15.6.1965 Born in Grasse, France

Exhibitions

2006
Patrick Painter Inc., Santa Monica, CA (solo)
2006
Galerie RX, Paris, France (solo)
2006
Centre culturel de la ville de Montceau-les Mines, France (solo)
2006
Galerie Hengevoss Dürkop-Jensen, Hamburg, Germany (solo)
2005
Centre culturel de la ville de Metz, France (solo)
2004
Métamorphoses, Galerie RX, Paris, France (solo)
2003
'Lucille', Paris, France (solo)
2003
'Human Presence', Galerie Hengevoss-Dürkop, Hamburg, Germany (group)
'AURA (mystére et force)' Galerie RX, Paris, France (group)
2002
Palais Bénédictine, Fécamp, France, 'Les Miroires de l´Âme' (Portraits 1989-2001) curator Erick Öge (solo)
2002
Bloc Portrait, Galerie Hengevoss Dürkop-Jensen, Hamburg, Germany (solo)
2001
Trauma, Galerie Hengevoss Dürkop-Jensen, Hamburg, Germany (solo)
2001
Galerie Aeroplastics, Damasquine, 'Face Off', Brussels, Belgium (group)
2000
Galerie Lucien Durand - Le Gaillard 'Collage d´hier et d´aujourd´hui' (group)
Passage de Retz, Paris, France, 'Narcisse blessé', curator Jean Michel Ribettes (group)
1999
Passage de Retz, Paris, France, 'Fétiches et fétichismes', curator Jean Michel Ribettes (group)
Palais Bénédictine, Fécamp, Frankreich, 'Collection Ahrenberg, 50 ans d´historie de l´art', curator Erick Öge (group)
1999
Galerie Lucien Durand - Le Gaillard, Paris, France (solo)
Enquête de Corps Palais Bénédictine, Fécamp, France (solo)
1998
Espace Yvonamar Palix, Mexico City, Mexico (solo)
Stephen Lacey Gallery, London, United Kingdom, curator Erick Öge (solo)
1998
Musée des Beaux Arts de Mons, Belgique, 'Collection Ahrenberg, 50 ans d´historie de lárt' Kurator Erick Öge (group)
Espace d´Art Yvonamor Palix, Mexico City, Mexico: Yolanda Gutterrez, Alicia Paz, Philippe Pasqua (group)
Espace d´Art Yvonamor Palix, Mexico City, Mexico : 'Hygiéne': Orlan, Aziz and Cuccher, Sandy Skoglund, Lucy Orta, Steve Miller, Philippe Pasqua and Yolanda Gutierrez (group)
Fondation la Source, Paris, France, 'Hygiene' (Orlan, ec.)(group)
Galerie Enrico Navarra, Paris, France, '80 artistes autour du mondial': Ben, Di Rosa, Arman, Jeff Koons, Cesar, Matta, Rotella, Chia etc. (group)
1997
Galerie Martini, Hong Kong, '3 Visionen zeitgenössischer französischer Kunst': Alain Diot, Zury Milshtein, Philippe Pasqua, curator Erick Öge (group)
1996
Galerie Boulakia, Paris, France (solo)
1995
Château de Grouchy, France (solo)
Espace Dautzenberg, Brussels, Belgium (solo)
The International Center, Detroit, USA (solo)
1994
Espace Cardin, Paris, France, in favour of l´Association AIDES(group)
Fondation Miró, Barcelona, Spain, 'Chaussures d´artistes' (group)
1992
Salon des Grands et jeunes d´aujourd´hui, Paris, France (group)
1991
Galerie Woo Mang and Partner, Paris, France (solo)
1990
'Espace Confluence', Paris, France (solo)
1990
Maison des Arts de Beausset, Beausset, France (group)

Literature

2006
Tully, Judd, Philippe Pasqua. Patrick Painter, Inc., Santa Monica, California.
2005
Michel Waldberg, Philippe Pasqua. Éditions De La Différence, Paris, France.
2003
Vernissage. Galerien Nord. Künstler & Ausstellungen in Galerien Herbst/Winter 2003/04
2002
June-July, Kunstforum International
March 20, Kunst-Stücke, Hamburger Abendblatt
2001
Programmheft der Galerie Hengevoss-Jensen zur Ausstellung 'Trauma'
'Paris sur la terre', Nr. 3, Magazin, (Olivia Benhamou)
'Profil femme', Nr. 23, Magazin, edition suisse, 'Pasqua, c´est trash' by Katia Barillot