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Yoann Mérienne: Glorifying Life in Movement

Sculpture-Like Paintings and Painting-Like Sculptures

An extraordinary artist has the capacity to dive deep into the unknown realms of the human mind, discover an archetype in his vision and return it into our three-dimensional world as an ideal. Exploring supreme epitome of individual power, Yoann Mérienne creates the artwork that glorifies concepts of strength, victory, movement, and intensity.

"Ebony II" by Yoann Mérienne, oil on canvas

“Most of my work is before the paint itself. Painting is only the last step, that will give everything a real soul.”

"Beauty of Defeat" by Yoann Mérienne, oil on canvas

With an idea in mind, Mérienne always starts with a sculpture: every scene he does, first, he sculpts it, then he makes an image of it and, finally, paints it. Inspired by the volume of a sculpture’s material, he connects with its movement through space and imprints felt motion with the interplay of light and shadow, displaying an understanding of human and animal anatomy. Following the creation of traditional sculpture, Mérienne continues with his painting technique, merging whole artistic process into one art piece.

"Le Dernier Rituel Première" by Yoann Mérienne, oil on canvas

“I think my painting and my sculpture help each other understand the world; in the end, all I do is try to sculpt when I paint, and to paint when I sculpt.”

"Oderunt Poetas" by Yoann Mérienne, oil on canvas

For the past ten years, Mérienne has been choosing oil painting as his preferred medium to work with. Nevertheless, since last year Yoann started applying everything that he has learned in oil, in a certain way, to acrylics, and it gave him a brand new approach to this medium. On the other hand, last year also brought a big change to his presented work: now, almost half of it consists of his sculptures.

"The Running Dog" by Yoann Mérienne, bronze sculpture, 2018

When talking about the inspiration for his art, Mérienne is being observant and receptive to the world and thinks that “…you can find some everywhere you look. I would say movies, museums, comic books, and video games, for sure. I find so much liberty in character design and concept, that you cannot find in films anymore.

"Le Courages Des Inconscients" by Yoann Mérienne, oil on canvas

Stimulated by the idea of the endless potential of the living creatures, Yoann Mérienne depicts the superior quintessence of the most dignified virtues. In order to accentuate this supreme concept, Mérienne strips away color from the paintings, creating a gray matter and emphasizing the movement. The viewer is stunned in front of these sculpture-inspired paintings, whose subject’s force is so tightly contained, that it feels like it is about to explode. Confidence, power, speed, energy, firmness, stability, durability, raw strength, and intensity of a close victory remind the viewer that being alive means being in motion and fighting forward – from surviving to thriving.

All images copyright of Yoann Mérienne

You can view more work by Yoann on his Instagram and website.

Article written by Katarina Petric

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