Isabelle Marmann (born in Luxembourg in 1975) practises drawing and graphic experimentation. Having been awarded an MA in art at the University of Strasbourg, she has exhibited both in Luxembourg and internationally and regularly carries out illustration commissions. She lives and works in Luxembourg.
“My practice of drawing is less about illustration than aesthetic construction and my works are extremely slow development structures. At the source of this approach are simple pencil line drawings – images and words. This collection of thousands of drawings, produced daily in an identical format from photographic, literary and cinematic sources, constitutes a sort of matrix. A task consisting of selection and association follows and then the patient job of transfer to other media: colour pencils, ink, print.
The series of drawings in colour pencils associate text and image, or more precisely words and portraits (of women, children, men, plants and animals). All these portraits come from an exercise of characterization, of detailed construction of actors in a story where each seems to play a particular “role”. The association of these characters with a little phrase, sometimes even just a single word, conjures up an offbeat and surreal poetic universe, which feeds a fiction the viewer constructs.
At the heart of my work, there is a relationship with time, which is communicated to the public. There’s a certain tension between the initial spontaneous pencil drawing of a figure and its painstaking elaboration in colour pencil, with a very slow technique of superimposing layers, in an almost meditative way. The “slowing down” related to this particular technique, the calmness and serenity are communicated through the drawings and becomes the mood of the viewer. This deceleration is a manifestation of my quest to bring structure to the world, but also the utopia of such a quest. I would like my images to let us take a breath and plunge us into a world of silence, contemplation and fragility.”