“What strikes first in the work of Walter Leblanc (1932–1986) is the place given to the light in his paintings and sculptures, of strong and comprehensible compositions made with a perfectly controlled execution. Undeniably, Walter Leblanc never left anything to chance and all his work was controlled by his thought, which studied the modes of artistic expression as well as the quest for a new aesthetic.
His artistic preoccupations identify him, undoubtedly, with the Zero Group, whose ambition was to use the artistic act to manifest a spiritual and social renewal, based on humanist values, able to resist the rising of post-war materialism. The use of light and its dynamic in Walter Leblanc’s work is an illustration of the Zero’s approach, which sought to give shape to immateriality and to make tangible the intangible.
With great rigour, that characterises his work, Walter Leblanc stages the light, without artifice, or any disrupting elements, which could risk distilling the viewer’s attention and distract him. Following the rule of the 3 units in antique theatre that stages time, location and action, he substitutes his rule of 3 uniformities by staging colour, structure and the medium used in order to provoke emotion by the sole deployment of mute reverberation of the light. Thus, the Twisted Strings appear like scores on which the light comes to play its silent music. The Mobilo-Static Torsions draw us to a vibrant universe, which invite the gaze to lose itself and find itself amongst halos whilst the light dances with fluidity and awakes the memory of bodies enclosed in these sculptures, simply named Torsions. They also reveal the possibility of a universal language built from ideal shapes, as mysterious as familiar, such as the Archetypal. Endeavoured to represent only simple geometric shapes, bare of any symbolic interpretations, to capture merely its essence, he leaves complete freedom to the spectator, who is invited to physically take part in the recreation of the artwork.”
Extract taken from the foreword by Baudouin Michiels in Walter Leblanc: Paintings & Sculptures from 1960-1983 exhibition catalogue available for sale from the 8 March at the gallery.
Works on show will include a selection of white Twisted Strings, black Twisted Strings, Torsions and Mobilo-Static.
Press enquiries: Niina Cunynghame at The Mayor Gallery firstname.lastname@example.org
Mon-Fri 10am - 5.30pm; Sat 12pm - 3pm - Admission: Free
Nearest Tube Station: Green Park or Piccadilly Circus.