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Figure yourself now

October 13, 2023 — January 7, 2024

Artist : François Olislaeger

Curator: Carine Roma-Clément

Let's start with drawing as a first gesture. As a trace. One of the oldest art forms found and recognized. For this space in the basement, I would like to propose a paper cave.

All three spaces would be covered with papers, of different qualities, in shades of white and composed organically, rhythmically, like a drawing. Volumes evoking stalagmites, stalactites and rocks, will be arranged here and there to disturb the top, bottom, right and left. Inside this "body", the visitor will be invited to stroll to discover the images hidden there. On the walls, a large number of black and white drawings, sometimes washed and always related to the shape of the support, will be inscribed.

I would like to make a series of humorous, poetic, satirical drawings related to the news of the current period that I will realize with black line. Perhaps also in the form of a linear frieze to mark a time, a space, propose a measure. Once the cave is in place, I would like to invite different people who seem to me representative of the "spirit of the times" to come and make a drawing. "Graffiti", "marginal" drawings, the so-called "made on a corner of the table". The quick gesture. Immediate expression, by a plurality of hands: anthropologists, scientists, playwrights, children ...

Drawings thought to discover in the interstices. The list of guest cartoonists will appear outside the cave. Thus, the drawing will be a collective work.


François Olislaeger
Excerpt from the Drawing Lab Project Production Grant application


Francois Olislaeger, dessin préparatoire

François Olislaeger, preparatory drawing 2022


The artist/curator duo

Portrait de François Olislaeger © Samuel Gratacap

François Olislaeger

After his drawing studies in Lyon, he worked in the news press (Le Monde, Libération, Les inrokuptibles) and regularly published drawn reports. He is the author among others of "Another world is possible", with Pierre Cattan, reportage in Venezuela with the Attac movement, as well as "Carnets d'Avignon", 7 years of drawings at the Avignon festival. He also produced a comic book on dance with Mathilde Monnier "Mathilde, danser après tout" published by Denoël graphic, and together they designed a show mixing dance and drawing, in 2014. He has just finished a biography of Marcel Duchamp published by Actes Sud.

Born in 1978 in Liège (Belgium), he lives and works between Paris and Mexico City.


© Photo Samuel Gratacap

Portrait de Carine Roma-Clement

Carine Roma-Clément

Holder of a DEA in Art History, Carine Roma-Clément became in 2002 in charge of communication and production of the contemporary art center of Istres. From 2003 to 2006, she joined the city of Saint Gratien as Director of Cultural Affairs.

Since 2007 she has been artistic director and curator of the Espace Jacques Villeglé in Saint Gratien in which she brings together some of the biggest names in French contemporary art. Its purpose: to make art accessible to all by creating intimacy between the public and the artists.

In 2016, she co-curated the Jacques Villeglé exhibition "MÉMOIRES" at the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Saint-Étienne.

Born in 1974, she lives and works in Nantes.

The duo wins the new Drawing Lab Project grant format

Francois Olislaeger, dessin préparatoire

François Olislaeger, preparatory drawing 2022

Drawing Lab Project is the production grant for a contemporary drawing exhibition offered by the Drawing Lab, the exhibition space of the Drawing Society. The call for projects, intended for artist/curator duos, aged at least 25 and of French nationality or living in France, was broadcast from June 15 to September 25, 2022.

In 2022, the grant was redesigned to select a single exhibition project dedicated to the practice of contemporary drawing and its exploration, thus guaranteeing a full year of production between the selection and the realization of the project. This short delay allows the duo to guarantee the exclusivity of the concept of their exhibition as well as the experimental nature of the place.

The Drawing Lab, led by the Association Drawing Projects & Friends, is engaged in the production of the exhibition and will present this project within its walls for 3 months from October 2023. The exhibition will be accompanied by a program of events and workshops accessible to all audiences as well as a monographic catalogue dedicated to the project as well as the production of a Drawing Edition, a work in limited quantities, signed and numbered.

Thus, the artist / curator duo benefits from a grant of 20,000 euros HT including the production of the works, the remuneration of the artist and that of the curator, the transport of the works, the expenses of the artist and the curator and the restoration of the exhibition spaces.

The project was selected by the artistic committee composed of:
Sandra Hegedüs, founder of SAM Art Projects and collector;
Matthieu Lelièvre, independent curator and artistic advisor to Mac Lyon;
Véronique Souben, artistic advisor and independent curator;
Christine Phal, founder of the Drawing Lab and Drawing Now Art Fair;
Philippe Piguet, art critic and independent curator;
Barbara Soyer, coordinator of the Extra-Large Drawing Chair at the Beaux-Arts de Paris and founder of The Drawer.