Story and Pic by Simon Barnett
Titane Laurent is a St Kilda artist who has followed her dream to find somewhere to work and show her work.
Born in Morocco to Belgian parents, Titane became interested in illustration and painting during her school years. Although she followed a corporate career in marketing, her passion for art led her to leave Belgium and continue her education as a cartoonist in New Zealand.
With regular contributions to a number of international newspapers, Titane developed a following but after some time, she re-directed her attention to painting and studied in Europe. Although Titane struggled with lots of composition, technique and creative, she felt herself losing freedom to create from inside and from another dimension, but then she found inspiration.
Titane said, “I got captivated and captured by my Chinese art teacher, kind of fell in love, and it’s kind of undone everything I learnt in Europe and just work more from an Inner knowledge than brain knowledge.”
Her mixed media paintings, and calligraphy over thick hidden foundation, reveals her interest in seeking a pictorial equivalent to the dynamic rhythms of life in fast, energetic, broad brushstrokes and the peaceful, deep spiritual journey of her own search for the Divine in silenced colours.
“… for eight years I just kind of, it was like an apprenticeship, it took me on board until we compare the work and when [we] knew I was ready it just kind of dropped me there … boom … it was a really hard experience because, I don’t know if it’s the Asian way, it’s like a little bit of martial arts … they are really strict on you, there’s no compliment, there’s no encouragement, it’s just escaping all the bullshit … excuse my French,” laughed Titane. “You get something much deeper, which is amazing and I like that and I want to keep working in that direction.”
Now a professional abstract painter, Titane has exhibited and won awards across the globe, from Perth to Mauritius, to Japan, to New York and Melbourne.
She eventually settled in Australia where she recently launched LAURENT Gallery and Art space with partner Jonathon Miller in St Kilda Melbourne. The space is her private gallery and studio but she has four other artists in residence from different fields in the arts.
Titane has had several exhibitions and functions such as book launches and is moving towards the gallery being open on a more regular basis. At the moment, it is by appointment.
“We just had an exhibition for guru shots, photographic exhibition, it was four days which allowed people to see the exhibition [and] also to go upstairs and meet the artist because I think commercially artist, they are often by [themselves] too much and this allows people to meet,” said Titane.
For further information, openings and events, visit the website http://laurentgallery.com