Each of Sabine Cornic‘s works is one-of-a-kind, and, according to Sabine, even the artist herself could not reproduce her own creations in exactly the same manner. The latter seems to be a considerable downside of the technique employed by the artist, but is there more to it?
Sabine’s main artistic media are mineral pigments and ink, which she – in Pollock-like style – pours and drips on Japanese Kozo paper. Such execution, without doubt, leaves a lot of room for unpredictability, but it is also a wonderful demonstration of how an artistic spirit can convert chaos into an eloquently aesthetic object of art.
Where do you get supplies for your work (paper, ink, pigment, etc.)? Do you have a favourite provider?
The Japanese paper I use is not that easy to get. I order it from a wholesale paper merchant in London and ask visiting friends to act as couriers. As for pigments, I buy them whenever I see some that spark an interest, but from time to time I indulge into a large order from a German pigment company which has hundreds and hundreds of different pigments (including really poisonous ones) for every purpose under the sun.
My dream is to visit this shop: Pigment
At what point can an amateur artist consider himself/ herself a professional one?
I honestly don’t know. Probably when you sell enough to pay the rent? (This criterion would exclude me…)
Does the place of residency affect an artist’s painting style? Has there been any change in your style after you moved from London to Bordeaux?
Everything can affect an artist’s style, but it’s often subtle. I have been working on a few pieces inspired by the Base sous-marine, a place that fascinates me with its eerie beauty and troubled history. Bordeaux is a very stony city, and I am intrigued by the texture and colour of the traditional limestone, so let’s see what happens with that in the future.
In your “Heimat” (in English: “Motherland”) project you claim to question the concepts of nationality, home, and belonging. Given that you yourself have been living abroad, where do you feel you belong?
Heimat is a difficult thing. Accepting to be without one has been a painful process. Yes, you can yourself be cosmopolitan, but the fact remains that you give up something to gain that status. I had underestimated how much it would affect me, and moving to Bordeaux last year is still unsettling me.
When describing your working process, you use the adjective “accidental” – can you please clarify what exactly such working process represents?
Accidental means I have no idea what I’m doing. I am not flippant, though – it is really like that. I love the process of pouring and dribbling paint, pressing paper into stains of wet ink, making creases, pouring more paint…. and having no control over it. Well, not much anyway. The beginning is always chaotic, but then, after a few layers, I begin to see something emerging, and I keep working on that with more focus. Learning when to stop is still difficult, and I have ruined more pieces then I can count by overdoing. The process takes a lot of time, because I need to let the paper dry before working on another layer. It’s easier in summer, when my studio gets boiling hot. 🙂
Who are some of the artists you are inspired by?
Lots and lots. A by no means finished list:
Anselm Kiefer (my all time ever favourite)
Edgar Degar is often quoted as having said that “Painting is not very difficult when you don’t know how; but when you know, oh! then, it’s another matter.” What did the great French painter mean?
I think he meant that you get better with practise, but your mind is always faster than your ability, so it gets ever harder to live up to your own expectations.
If you had to re-paint one of your works from memory, would you be able to recall all the details?
Interested in learning more about Sabine Cornic or getting in touch with her? Here is where you can find the artist: