Francois du Plessis – Artworks

Plessis an intuitive artist.2 In fact, these book objects are not created merely by sawing and cutting and then reassembling something. The manual skill is necessary, but it is not the major determining factor. The new works, downright courageous – but never appearing boisterous – in their colourfulness, demonstrate that the material, in this case the coloured upper edges of many different books, must be composed. Random assembling would not create these fascinating works, which with their dynamic, merging and twisting colour play should remind us of paintings by Delaunay, Miró or perhaps Mack. And can do it, too.

“As book object is labelled everything that looks like a book but isn’t one, rather represents a alienation of it” reads the first sentence under the relevant heading in Wikipedia.1 The internet version of the all- knowing rubbish heap actually instances a night commode which allegedly looks like a stack of books. One can twist and turn it how one will but not everything Marjorie’s descendant reveals to us really makes us more knowledgeable.

François du Plessis’ book objects rarely look like books. They look like large tree slices. They look like gay whirls of colour or vertically arranged landscapes. And they look like small insects running up the sheer wall. No, his book objects do not look like alienated books. And yet they are book objects. Because the are made out of what books are made of: many layers of printed pages, velvety linen bindings or shining soft covers, and colourful bookmarkers. For François du Plessis it is not important which facts are stored in the books he works with, what ideas and experiences their text speaks about. His material is the material. His book objects are objects made from books. François du

Robert Mertens calls François du Plessis an intuitive artist.2 In fact, these book objects are not created merely by sawing and cutting and then reassembling something. The manual skill is necessary, but it is not the major determining factor. The new works, downright courageous – but never appearing boisterous – in their colourfulness, demonstrate that the material, in this case the coloured upper edges of many different books, must be composed. Random assembling would not create these fascinating works, which with their dynamic, merging and twisting colour play should remind us of paintings by Delaunay, Miró or perhaps Mack. And can do it, too.

However, despite the comparison with the art of others we will always believe to recognize in the various works adaptations of nature, of landscapes or even architecture. What we believe to recognize might help us in the approach to these basically genuine art works. As a matter of fact, only one thing is certain: François du Plessis’ book objects are neither suitable as illustrations of our memories, nor withstand the comparison with reality. In the contrary. François du Plessis creates out of the material available to him, the book, totally new sculptures which combine the dimensions of surface and space, suitable to absorb and store our stories. – Many objects, sculptures or installations are no more than interpretations; interpretations of figures of historic stature, of spatial perception, landscapes and architecture. Rather seldom are such as François du Plessis’ book objects, which offer us something truly new.

Stefan Skowron

Francois du Plessis – Artworks

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