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Interpretations of Venus de Lespugue:
Flint pieces

The study of the first sculptures and paintings humanity produced take us back to Source. The further back we look, the closer we are to the original primitive expressions. One of these masterpieces has particularly inspired me: I “encountered” the Dame de Lespugue a few years ago in a show, and time literally stopped for an instant that contained eons. So humble and discreet in size, her presence contains a true power and magnetism that brought me to study her and be absorbed into her essence. Several formal studies of her head and bust were necessary to understand her volumes and her proportions. I then understood how Giacometti and Picasso had been inspired in their time by her, and the role she played in the birth of cubism and modern art. I attempted a series of sculptures based on her proportions and rhythms: my intention was to interpret in a language of my own, where the attributes become abstract, and hopefully still containing her presence. What has baffled me is how timeless it is, regardless of its age, some 25 000 years. This is a strong reminder for us who are still quite conditioned by the idea we may be superior to those lost cultures and civilisations. There is still much to be learned from them. Their urge to create these works captivate us because they take us back to an essential Now, devoid of the extraordinary complexities and confusions of our contemporary world. Here, no ownership, no speculation or career building, but Essence: Origin also as mother, who brings us into this world. Lover, who enables us through love, to unite and keep the tribe alive. Sage and keeper of wisdom, as guide and teacher, holding the memory of the ancestors through the generations. It is important to remember : these Mother/Lover/Sage figures (referred to also as Venus) were produced over the period of some 20 000 years, almost exclusively: masculine representations are basically non existant. As our own male dominated cultures and religions are finally losing ground, recent discoveries are revealing women’s essential role in Paleolithic cultures. Women were also hunters, creators of cave paintings, and key members of their tribes. Nothing proves otherwise. Archeology and the study of prehistory are quite recent sciences: they were mostly developed in 19th century Europe, when male domination was not questioned. It is therefore not a surprise that prehistoric cultures, especially the Palaeolithic were described as…. male dominated. Today, as we still witness the horrors of war and the ongoing pillaging of our planet by many multinational companies, it is urgent that a sea change may occur. For too long, male leaders have proven their incapacity to recognise that real power does not reside in the accumulation of riches or territories, but in the protection and honouring of where it all comes from: Source. To heal the endless wounds of the earth, we must consider : there is no planet B, and as a new cycle of protecting our beautiful planet from unending abuse is under way, we may, together, finally unite as a species regardless of origin or gender. The time is now.