Artsper guarantees: secure online transactions, worldwide shipping and free returns! Find out more

Meeting with Etienne Quesnay

Artist

Meeting with Etienne Quesnay - illustration 1

Etienne Quesnay is an emerging French artist renowned for his watercolour faces, which were recently transformed into Instagram filters. A jack of all trades, he also raps, and as a musician goes by the name of Kaesen. A strong believer in the power of his imagination and dreams, he doesn't shy away from experimenting with different techniques to engage with and create new emotions and ideas. Welcome to the wonderful mind of Etienne Quesnay.

Could you tell us a little more about your career?

I started drawing aged 6, trying to imitate my father's pencil sketches. I continued throughout my childhood before gradually starting to paint.

I came to Paris when I was 21. It was there that I really started exhibiting my works on Instagram, exposing myself to other people's opinions. I painted a lot of inspiring models and beauties as well as artists. They would often repost me, which helped me to make myself known at first. Then one thing led to another and I did a collaboration with Paterson, which ended up in major fashion and streetwear shops. I then tried to put my imagination to the test more, to only concentrate on raw creations, born of spirit, and to no longer only do portraits of real people. I also had this need to leave watercolour and confront myself with other techniques: acrylic, collages with words or shapes and oil. To stand out, I started to make Instagram filters, then there was this opportunity given by MAD media that really increased my visibility. Then followed meetings with Artsper, Adidas and other brands I can't name yet but that I am going to collaborate with very soon. This is only the beginning I hope.

What makes you want to paint?

Painting is more of a need than a desire. It is my way of saying things subtly, of voicing my melancholy, doubts and thoughts. It is a truly magical moment when I imagine or discover what my next creation will resemble, either on my sheet of paper or canvas. I find so much pleasure in painting.


Meeting with Etienne Quesnay - illustration 1
Meeting with Etienne Quesnay - illustration 1

What contemporary artists inspire you?

There are artists whose work I appreciate, who make me feel things: Kopeto, Emir Shiro, Ines Longevial, Dian Dal-Pra or Gabrielle Rul, who made me want to paint a little bit everywhere, on every support, without second-guessing it. In a more global sense, I am most inspired by the emotions that come from words, photos or music.

You mostly paint women, why is this?

To be honest, there are hundreds of possible answers.

You use the internet and social media to develop your career and visibility online; how do you think the internet impacts an artist's career?

The internet is the luck of our generation. It is the way we can all break down barriers and say hello to people we would have never otherwise met in life. As an artist, Instagram is your own gallery, a loudspeaker that lets you express who you are as a person through images. If people agree with your universe, if your character is sincere and you are armed with patience and care, it can only work.

What are your favourite places in Paris to find inspiration?

Paris as a whole inspires me. It's a predictable and easy thing to say, but you only have to walk a few metres to find inspiring faces, fantastic skies, monuments which sometimes don't even look like they're there… If I only had to mention one place, I would say Parc Monceau. But inspiration mostly comes from our daily life, from hope, dreams, the past, music and other things I'm forgetting.

Meeting with Etienne Quesnay - illustration 1
Meeting with Etienne Quesnay - illustration 1

“Dreamer" is a word that you often come back to on your Instagram; do you consider yourself a dreamer?

I am a dreamer that wants to live his dreams. I approach dreams methodically, reflecting on how to achieve them. I am a child from the countryside, modest and raised in love. There is this notion of gentleness and hope that has been with me from the start. I absolutely need dreams. And I spend the majority of my time persuading myself that I can live them.

You lend your brushes to numerous fashion brands (Farfetch, GR8 Tokyo, Paterson, Opening Ceremony); what do you think about collaborations between brands and artists?

Certain people refuse this mixture. In my opinion, collaborations between brands and artists is of our era. It is a superb means of expression as long as it comes from a healthy desire. I am not really a part of this, but when major artistic figures lend their talent to brands, they become public and available to a much larger number of people. It can only be beneficial.

You paint and you rap; what other talents are you hiding?

I don't know all of my talents yet. I still have time to experience my imagination and find myself. I hope that I have other talents. They may be hiding, but I'll find them eventually.

Red or blue?

Blue is more versatile and poetic. It has much more beautiful things to say.


Their favourite artworks

Etienne Quesnay, Matin plein d'encre, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Matin plein d'encre, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$385

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Feu Follet, Drawing

Etienne Quesnay

Feu Follet, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Drawing

$452

Etienne Quesnay, Rachael, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Rachael, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$396

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Circle Face, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Circle Face, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$430

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Tu fumes tellement, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Tu fumes tellement, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out

Etienne Quesnay, Selfie, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Selfie, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$396

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Selfie, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Selfie, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$396

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Curieuse, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Curieuse, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$430

Etienne Quesnay, Mélancolie moderne, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Mélancolie moderne, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$418

Etienne Quesnay, Visage palette, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Visage palette, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Insomnie, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Insomnie, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$464

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Bukowski face, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Bukowski face, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out

Etienne Quesnay, Rêveuse, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Rêveuse, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$362

Our recommendations Etienne Quesnay, Cloudy Mood, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Cloudy Mood, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$373

Etienne Quesnay, Un rêve de plus, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Un rêve de plus, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out

Etienne Quesnay, Peinture du sud II, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Peinture du sud II, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out

Etienne Quesnay, Ne dis rien, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Ne dis rien, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

$441

Etienne Quesnay, Bain avec la lune, Painting

Etienne Quesnay

Bain avec la lune, 2019
12.2 x 9.1 inch
Painting

Sold out