Hervé BONSARD, born on April 27, 1963, is a French painter, son of a blue collar worker. His studio is located in the ancestral family home built in 1806, near the town of Cognac. A militant artist, his work opposes the supremacy of the idea, conceptual art and the regime of singularity by focusing solely on skill and rarity. He is the heir of the Baroque painters who sought truth, as opposed to the the idealization of beauty in the Italian High Renaissance. He naturally integrates certain Baroque characteristics by producing an art which addresses the onlooker’s feelings, rather than their reason. He does not hesitate to appeal to the senses and affects. His images aim to strike the imagination more than the spirit…
What makes Hervé BONSARD one of our great contemporary painters is of course the precision of his hand and the mastery of his technique. But it is above all the luminosity of his observation which betrays a talent for which he will be remembered as a French painter on a par with others to whom he is so frequently compared. Hervé BONSARD has begun an international career. His art inspires theatricality and emotion, but remains enigmatic, timeless, with a large part of mystery.
Hervé BONSARD’s ambitions lead him along other paths than a simple transgression of the rules of modern or contemporary art. They lead him to break away… to follow in the footsteps of the great 17th century Masters to whom he aspires, drawn by the light which illuminates as much as it conceals, by exalting and destructive passions, by identity robbed and reinvented. He is committed with all his being to the search for a painting style authentically dedicated to Man.
Over the years, Hervé BONSARD’s means of expression have been confirmed as a natural movement. To step out of line, not to subordinate his practice to the classical laws of the market and marketing, but also the obsession for creation and a high degree of know-how, to push the limits… have always been part of his modus operandi.
« By devoting 15 years to a quest for absolute perfection, Hervé BONSARD has carved a path dedicated to a conception that breaks with current painting ethos. His style of painting plunges the visitor into timeless perfection, reminiscent of the golden age of European painting ».
« Hervé BONSARD’s painting is not so much contemporary as permanent. He is not looking to please a public which does not judge with the eyes, but looks with the ears… »
« Optical games, recollections of Flemish painting and flashbacks to Caravaggio are used to build his paintings with a provocative realism; a stubborn search for volume and chiaroscuro that goes beyond the immediacy of some Baroque painters ».
« The transversal reading of these paintings lets BONSARD’s great humanity and infinite sensitivity shine through. It is with a provocative independence from contemporary art that he affirms Man’s place at the centre of the universe »
« And if technical skills are the absolute minimum required, the excellence of Hervé BONSARD’s work always draws its source from one essential ingredient: passion. It is the driving force expressed through his sensitivity. »
« He has succeeded in achieving a balance between naturalism and imagination. His painting often feeds on illusion, better yet, on the creation of illusion. »