Par la cheminée


Date : 1991

Medium : Painting

Size : 150 x 105 cm

Acrylic on canvas.

The material used is fluid, creating a light, supple but precise gesture. But Alechinsky admits to feeling a certain anxiety faced with a blank sheet of paper, which is why he often prefers to use pre-printed paper.
In 1965 Alechinsky created, his first Marges, series of vignettes that surround the central picture, which tells a parallel story to that of the main work.
The fragments of stories and memories contained in these pages become the source of inspiration allowing him to create an imaginary world around pockets of reality.
The friezes add a playful touch to his work, depicting an imaginary world featuring a multitude of themes, which make up an important element of the work.

The guide

Is this the work of a naïve artist or just a childish painting? This is in fact the immediately recognisable style of Pierre Alechinsky. The artist takes us into a free but shadowy world that echoes the style of surrealism he is so familiar with. Think now about the title of the work: Through the Chimney. The central grey section depicts characters, perhaps animals, that appear to be floating and whirling about as if they are about to be drawn up or have been blown out of the large chimney at the bottom of the picture. On the left, there appears to be a hill. And is it the sun shining down from above? Clearly Pierre Alechinsky has not made it easy for us to understand his work. He adheres to none of the usual rules of perspective. The grey tinted background gives us no indication of distance between the various elements, nor of their respective size. What seems to be a free and quick drawing, surprisingly has a large frame around it. This is the principle of "remarques marginales”, quite characteristic of Alechinsky, where the drawing becomes a kind of written work of art. And like the characters of a book, the women and snakes that can be made out in the picture appear to be calling on our imagination.