Logo – Interview of Merit artwork's graphic designer + live video
A couple of weeks after the release of Logo’s second EP “Merit” on Kitsuné (which you can purchase here), watch this amazing video of some of their live performances !
Also have a look at the interview and the work of Jérôme Romain, the talented graphic designer and painter of “Merit”‘s artwork ! The interview was made by Holly Stanton, one of Kitsuné Journal’s contributors.
What is your artistic background? What provoked your foray into painting as a medium?
I’m mostly influenced by figurative painting. What I like most are the painters with strong identities who managed to capture something from their time while at the same time to bring something new from a formal point of view.
The art of lighting in Caravage paintings, the incredible boldness of Cézanne, David Hockney or Peter Blake’s Californian life scenes and most of all Edouard Manet who combines classical and modern in the subjects and compositions as well as in the technical things.
However, it’s mostly the world I’m surrounded with which inspires me, these little things or these moments which seem to be meaningless that once painted become almost like symbols.
I’ve always drawn so I did not choose paintings, it was like a logical thing to me.
Some of your paintings play on the “snapshot” photography aesthetic, capturing moments of fleeting or candid nature and playing with flash-like lighting. To what extent does photography play a role in your practice, and which photographers do you look to for reference?
There’s indeed a big part of my work that goes through the esthetic of photography, I’m having fun with these codes.
Photography is my basic material, everything begins with it, without any still image, there’s no possible painting for me.
I don’t have any model photographer, I sometimes look at some of them but when I like it, I sometimes feel disappointed that it’s not paintings.
For instance, some pictures of Martin Parr (to quote only one name) seem like good examples of what I want to show of the world.
Also juxtaposing the quickness of the moments you paint is your careful attention to detail that approaches photorealism without compromising the natural tendencies of your materials. How much time do you devote to a single painting, and are there some subjects that require more time and attention than others?
That’s a good definition of my work, both a will of reality and of paintings’ reality.
Time is often a question of size, but I have to admit that bodies are more difficult for me. For instance, when there are too much visible marks on a body or a face, it seems to me that it lacks realism and if I smoothes it it feels like it’s loosing taste. Everything has to be in the happy medium.
Your paintings frequently reference moving image and film or video stills. Do you admire any film directors in particular for a painterly composition in their films?
I indeed made a series of paintings based on films’ images and I may do this again but this was especially a logical follow-up of my investigation on photography particularities.
This allowed me to explore some new media.
Your artwork is featured as the cover of LOGO’s latest EP . After Kanye West’s use of a George Condo painting for his latest album, do you see a growing presence of painting in popular or commercial imagery?
Thanks for making me discovering Georges Condo, but I’m not interested in popular imagery.
I avoid everything which is television, commercial radios, magazines and other things from mass culture.
I just paint while listening to France Culture or philosophy conferences and then I go out skating or having a drink with some friends.