Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Meet Renowned Sculptor & Public Artist Charlotte Franchisey, Known For Her Monumental Works In Steel And Plexiglass

Le Verre d’Eau, ‘The Glass of Water’, Steel, 12ft

Charlotte Franchisey was born in Paris, France. She earned a masters degree in art at the renowned Fine Arts, Essag, Olivier de Serres. At the age of twelve, Charlotte embraced sculpture as her means of expression and has been creating art since her childhood in Nice, Côte d’Azur. She now spends most of her time between her studios in Miami and Paris creating work for private collections, corporate clients, cities and municipalities worldwide.

Artist Charlotte Franchisey

The artist has held numerous exhibitions at notable art galleries and prestigious art fairs such as the Grand Palais in Paris, Galerie Roy Sfeir, Kavachnina Contemporary, CityLoftArt in the Miami Design District, Sculptmiami during Art Basel Miami Beach and many more.

La Piscine, ‘The Swimming Pool’, Plexiglass and Steel, 7ft

Charlotte is known for her sculptures in steel and plexiglass. “The fusion between stainless steel and plexiglass, roughness vs. softness,” using a sub-tropic palette with European linear abstract designs.

La Vague, ‘The Wave’, Plexiglass and Steel, 7.55ft

Her work has been exhibited and commissioned into important collections around the world. Charlotte has won many awards and is featured in numerous international publications. The artist has collaborated in several theatres, ballets and performances linking her work with music and dance.

Les Vignes Pourpres, ‘Purple Vines’, Plexiglass and Stainless Steel, 24.60ft

We recently had the pleasure to chat with Charlotte to learn more about her art career, earlier works, as well as her past and present projects:

Q – How did you get started on this path?

A – I started as a child. Around 8 years old, I had fun copying the drawings of Dürer, Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo by enlarging them. I tried to reproduce all the details. I was mainly interested in portraits, it was as if I was talking with them and Dürer’s rabbit. Later around the age of 12, I started created sculptures with clay of children’s heads. Then I slowly dried them in the electric oven of the kitchen. I also loved building models of boats. At 17, I went back to an art school in Paris. I did not enroll in sculpture or painting, as I did not want to be influenced by the teaching I would receive. I chose to study architecture and interior design, I received a degree in this discipline from the École Nationale Supérieure of Applied Arts and Trades of Art (School of Arts and Design), also known as Olivier de Serres and abbreviated to ENSAAMA, a post-baccalaureate teaching establishment for the decorative arts in Paris, France. My studies finished, and I began working in an architectural firm while developing my work on the opposition of bronze and paper materials, durable verses disposable. I created huge bronze books with specific themes such as Cosmos, Birth of Literature, Human Rights, etc.

Fountain, Plexiglass and Stainless Steel, 13.78ft

Q – Where does your inspiration come from, what influences you?

A – Inspiration for my monumental sculptures comes from history, geology, the life and style of the places where my sculptures are located. My approach is not the same for a piece that will be in the mountains as for one that will be at the seaside. Depending on where the sculpture will be located or who it is for, I try to understand the people, place or location, so that I can capture its history within my work.

Fleur, ‘Flower’, Plexiglass, Stainless Steel Mirror, 1.64ft

Q – What is your creative process like?

A – When I have a quieter moment, I make smaller sculptures. I can develop more quickly my ideas that drive others, it’s like an endless spiral. I also have time to draw with China ink and mixed media. I worked a lot with the Ballets de Monte-Carlo on the French Riviera. I went to their studio to draw their performances, the speed of movement has always fascinated me. Perhaps to have a balance between the slowness of the realization of a monumental sculpture and the speed of drawing or painting.

L’Equilibriste, ‘Tightrope’, Plexiglass, 1.15ft

Q – How has your practice changed or evolved over time?

A – I originally started making sculptures that were cast in bronze, like the Great Themed Books I had mentioned. A little later I had the chance to go to Carrara in Italy to work with white marble, which is very beautiful, very pure. I wanted to compare two steps; one being that with bronze we start from the void to create the sculpture, and with marble, one will seek the sculpture which is hidden in the block. Then I started looking for other materials to work with, I wanted a 21st century material, contemporary with color. I found the plexiglass, and I was immediately comfortable because plexiglass is lighter than bronze and marble, also transparent. I can have a variety of colors, and I can incorporate metals such as stainless steel, bronze, etc.

Robot, Plexiglass and Stainless Steel, 9.18ft

Q – What are you working on at the moment, What’s next on the horizon for you?

A – At the moment I am finishing several commissioned sculptures and working on new projects. I am created some pieces that will be suspended indoors with high ceilings or outdoors in green spaces. And I am currently exhibiting small sculptures in a gallery in Saint Tropez / Port Cogolin, on the French Riviera.

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