Recent work

The quest for color


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1998 coup d'oeil - Glance, Claude Bellegarde

Coup d’œil - Glance
1998, 16 x 13 ins
nitrocellulose paint on canvas

1998 L'œil d'origine - The original eye, Claude Bellegarde

L’œil d'origine - The original eye
1998, 25½ x 15 ins
acrylic paint on canvas

Vision of color1997-2001

le regard antérieur - Looking back, 1998 - Claude Bellegarde

Le regard antérieur - Looking back
1998, 39½ x 39½ ins
nitrocellulose paint on canvas
Private collection

In the back of our eye lurks a more ancient vision, a composite mass of insects, animals, humans, steeped in elemental forces. A wave of colors, in thousands of tones, warm and cold, flows through the eye and spreads into a zone of the brain where the meaning of colors is filtered… CLAUDE BELLEGARDE: JOURNAL


There is, in Bellegarde’s work, a coded language of color, a sort of spiritual insertion into the order of the world, the cosmos, depending on the degrees of continued initiation that alter register and reference (sometimes astrology and psychology, sometimes oriental mysticism, or technique, or yet again, medicine).

It varies in intensity, either directing the abstract energy of the body and irradiated life, or the sensitivity of the gesture, sound and image. But behind the new worlds that Bellegarde identifies through the colored movement of the being, we should examine the progression of the work towards its intimate turbulence, toward the inner maelstrom.

Bellegarde is above all an artist, a researcher, an explorer of the borderlines between life and art, painting and the other arts (especially music), art and technique, technique and its formal and sensitive virtualities. The chromotherapy cubicles are evidence of this, when they take account of the medical repercussions on man and his illnesses.

If we follow his career, with all its successive experimental stages, we are struck by Bellegarde’s extraordinary fidelity to his principles. It’s as though he wishes to invent his own life; and not only to justify it, and give it expression and significance, but to liberate it from death, or at least become reconciled with its invisible side. This freedom of spirit, linked with the deeply serious manner in which he invests himself in his work, both overwhelms and intrigues me.

… The color of our gaze is an intangible inner light, the reflection of our image. The channeling of our emotions, but also of our reflection. A way of looking is also a choice… and in our choice of colors we reveal ourselves… CLAUDE BELLEGARDE: JOURNAL