Marie-Noëlle de la Poype: Haiku

Opening reception: 25 February, 6-8pm

February 25, 2016 - April 02, 2016

Yoshii Gallery is pleased to present the sculptures of Marie-Noëlle de La Poype for her inaugural solo exhibition in the United States. This exhibition pairs new works from her Sun and Split series (2009-present) with traditional haiku, a Japanese short poetry form created in the 17th century. Through clever metaphors and metonyms, haiku capture the essence of the natural world, daily life, and profound human feeling in only 17 syllables. This exhibition features poems by literary masters Basho (d.1694), Buson (d.1783), Tagami Kikusha (d.1826), and Takahama Kyoshi (d.1959). Like haiku, de La Poype’s sculptures give a primary impression of simplicity, but on closer inspection they reveal much more: Sentiments and sensations recalled from another time and place. A subtle elegance only paralleled by nature itself.

Marie-Noëlle de La Poype was born in Belgium in 1949. She followed an unorthodox path to her vocation; studying art in her early life before earning a doctorate in law at the University of Brussels, and later representing Belgium as a champion golfer. She arrived as a sculptor as if by instinct, her vision ignited by the natural landscapes of Patagonia, South America and Anjou, France.

­Her sculptural works make brief visual reference to 20th century biomorphism, before plunging into the unrecorded depths of planetary history. The raw aesthetics of each piece embody the artist’s primal devotion to the natural contours of the earth. De La Poype’s minimalist process reflects her reverence for the natural universe: She performs only slight alterations to the materials that she extracts from nature and mimics the forms of these organic structures with telluric mediums; metals and resins.

For her Sun and Split series (2009-present), de La Poype acts as a curator of the great works of the earth. Each sculpture in her Sun series recalls the moments when skies and land converge: Mountains illuminated by moonlight, the sunset over a quieting landscape. These works evoke the balance of the cosmos suspended in slate, cetacean bone, and resin.

De La Poype’s Split sculptures stand as monuments to the antiquity of the planet. Accentuating the contours of Anjou slate, each work is a textural world unto itself: They are redolent of humanity’s abiding bond with nature; the inexorable position of man as one of an infinity of fauna to traverse terra firma. Japanese sculptor Isamu Noguchi (d.1988) said of stone, “When I tap into it, I get an echo of that which we are. Then the whole universe has resonance.” De La Poype amplifies this echo, revealing the relationship of man and nature through her poetic sculptures.

Marie-Noëlle de La Poype currently lives and works in France. Her sculptures reside in a number of collections across Europe including the Museum of Contemporary Art Ixelles, Belgium, Palais Bulles, France, Le Foyer Collection, Luxembourg, as well as public and private collections in China and South America.