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Contemporary Figurativism

Figurativism is a form of art that seeks to represent external reality. It is partially linked to realism yet differs from it at the same time. As far as collective memory is concerned, man has always used figurative art as a means of communication. Whether it's a declaration of fear or love, it has been communicated from one individual to another through art. We often associate figuration with mememis (a Greek term meaning “the act of reproducing or depicting and inventing things"). In this sense art has always had a figurative element, since artists are continually trying to find ways to interpret reality. Expressionism, Symbolism, Impressionism and Surrealism produce figurative art in their own way.

Though long neglected by contemporary artists in favour of abstract and non-figurative approaches, it never disappeared entirely and is currently enjoying something of a resurgence, with works being showcased by Gagosian, Templon, The White Cube and hundreds of other leading galleries.

Figuration continued to spark enthusiasm in artists, even with the arrival of abstract art in the early 20th century. Some artists established their style through the movement and others built theirs from it, which was the case with American Hyperrealism and Pop art. This caused a significant change from classic figurative painting, where its innovative content and use of acrylic paint attracted a completely new audience. Pop art was in some ways the democratisation of art, as it attracted the interest of both art connoisseurs and the general public. This is mostly due to its method of presenting imagery from mass and popular culture, which were sourced from various media outlets such as, comic strips, adverts or even cinema posters.

Italian artist Silvia Papas, is part of the contemporary figuration movement showing a particular interest in Pop art. Her seductive feminine figures are almost provocative and flirt with the viewer. Themes of clashing ideological interests and a society damaged by overconsumption dominate his works, yet he leaves the power of female seduction intact and unchanged.

Women are recurring subjects in contemporary figuration, where they're either lying down, completely naked or only revealing a small amount of skin. Either way, the female body is at the forefront of this movement.  Algerian painter, Fawzi Brachemi devoted a large amount of his work to painting the faces and bodies of women. His works are influenced by previous art movements and his familial roots. The curved female forms and bright colours allude to Chinese calligraphy, whilst the dark eyes of his subjects invite the viewer on a journey into the unknown.

See Figurativism in a new light through our selection of works from the new generation of contemporary artists.

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Our recommendations Slim Aarons, Poolside Glamour, Photography

Slim Aarons

Poolside Glamour, 1970
39.8 x 59.8 inch
Photography

$7,020

Our recommendations Slim Aarons, El venero, Print

Slim Aarons

El venero, 1967
29.9 x 39.8 inch
Print

$3,586

Francine Van Hove, La petite lampe 1930, Painting

Francine Van Hove

La petite lampe 1930, 2008
21.3 x 31.9 inch
Painting

$15,038

Genevieve Gaignard, Muscle Beach, Photography

Genevieve Gaignard

Muscle Beach, 2016
29 x 42 x 3.1 inch
Photography

$7,300

Our recommendations Zalez, King, Drawing

Zalez

King, 2015
29.9 x 20.9 x 0.8 inch
Drawing

$1,504

Our recommendations Pairoj Karndee, Summer winds, Painting

Pairoj Karndee

Summer winds, 2013
39.4 x 31.5 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$5,263

Zalez, Point, Painting

Zalez

Point, 2013
39.4 x 39.4 x 1.2 inch
Painting

$2,429

Isabelle Zutter, Volupté, Painting

Isabelle Zutter

Volupté, 2016
39.4 x 31.9 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$2,776

Charlotte Barrault, Justine, Painting

Charlotte Barrault

Justine, 2016
39.4 x 31.9 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$2,082

Sébastien  Layral, 577 INO ONI Émilie & Mathieu, Painting

Sébastien Layral

577 INO ONI Émilie & Mathieu, 2013
98.4 x 78.7 x 2 inch
Painting

$23,251

Sergio Ceccotti, Il fulmine, Painting

Sergio Ceccotti

Il fulmine, 2011
25.6 x 31.5 inch
Painting

$5,205

Silvia Papas, Spring time, Painting

Silvia Papas

Spring time, 2016
47.2 x 23.6 x 2 inch
Painting

$5,205

Our recommendations Costa Dvorezky, Captive III, Painting

Costa Dvorezky

Captive III, 2014
67.7 x 60.6 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$19,665

Fawzi Brachemi, Femmes d’Alger, Painting

Fawzi Brachemi

Femmes d’Alger, 2001
28.7 x 39.4 inch
Painting

$4,164

Alexandrine Deshayes, Urban Jungle II, Painting

Alexandrine Deshayes

Urban Jungle II, 2013
51.2 x 38.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$7,519

Mireille Arbellot, Psyché, Painting

Mireille Arbellot

Psyché, 2015
57.5 x 47.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$5,321

Robert Combas, Le mannequin contemporain, Print

Robert Combas

Le mannequin contemporain, 2008
39.4 x 32.3 x 0.4 inch
Print

$4,396

Philippe Huart, Psychose, Painting

Philippe Huart

Psychose, 2013
47.2 x 47.2 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$10,989

Francine Van Hove, Un peu de rouge, Painting

Francine Van Hove

Un peu de rouge, 2011
19.7 x 25.6 inch
Painting

$12,724

Francine Van Hove, Les deux belles, Painting

Francine Van Hove

Les deux belles, 2012
36.2 x 28.7 inch
Painting

$19,896

Didier Lourenço, Mientras duermes, Print

Didier Lourenço

Mientras duermes, 2018
28.3 x 28.3 inch
Print

$636

Virginie Mézan de Malartic, Tifany, Painting

Virginie Mézan de Malartic

Tifany, 2015
36.2 x 28.7 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$2,545

Eugène Bégarat, Lauren dans l'escalier, Painting

Eugène Bégarat

Lauren dans l'escalier, 2013
25.6 x 36.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$5,784

Nick Lord, Sophie Dahl, Painting

Nick Lord

Sophie Dahl, 2014
42.5 x 41.3 x 2 inch
Painting

$19,287

Diana Malivani, The Blue Butterfly's Dream, Painting

Diana Malivani

The Blue Butterfly's Dream, 2018
17.7 x 35.4 x 1.6 inch
Painting

$3,470

Zalez, Flying Dirt Leopard, Painting

Zalez

Flying Dirt Leopard, 2014
51.2 x 38.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$3,586

Keith O'Connor, Pure, Painting

Keith O'Connor

Pure, 2017
39.4 x 39.4 x 1.2 inch
Painting

$3,702

Alejandra Caballero, Orange Juice, Painting

Alejandra Caballero

Orange Juice, 2016
19.7 x 19.7 inch
Painting

$1,504

Zalez, Orange Juice, Painting

Zalez

Orange Juice, 2014
28.7 x 23.6 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$2,198

Zalez, Shirt, Painting

Zalez

Shirt, 2014
29.9 x 20.9 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$1,851

Dominique Guillemard, Petite réunion, Painting

Dominique Guillemard

Petite réunion, 1990
13.8 x 11 inch
Painting

$2,892

Eugène Bégarat, By the Pool, Painting

Eugène Bégarat

By the Pool, 2014
25.6 x 19.7 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$5,900

Eugène Bégarat, Au jardin, Painting

Eugène Bégarat

Au jardin, 2018
21.7 x 15 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$3,355

Boreli, Point, Painting

Boreli

Point, 2014
51.2 x 35 inch
Painting

$2,314

Our recommendations Franck Bouroullec, Cabu, Painting

Franck Bouroullec

Cabu, 2016
63 x 37.8 x 1.2 inch
Painting

$5,784

Sébastien  Layral, 558 INO ONI Violaine, Painting

Sébastien Layral

558 INO ONI Violaine, 2013
51.2 x 38.2 x 1.2 inch
Painting

$6,941

Bluzot Philippe, Rencontre nocturne, Painting

Bluzot Philippe

Rencontre nocturne, 2015
38.2 x 51.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$3,239

Eleonora Drumeva, The First Night of the Red Dress, Painting

Eleonora Drumeva

The First Night of the Red Dress, 2014
55.1 x 51.2 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$4,627

Fawzi Brachemi, Toilette intime, Painting

Fawzi Brachemi

Toilette intime, 2006
27.6 x 27.6 inch
Painting

$3,331

Fawzi Brachemi, Henné 3, Painting

Fawzi Brachemi

Henné 3, 2015
28.7 x 23.6 inch
Painting

$1,770

Silvia Papas, Paris night crossing, Painting

Silvia Papas

Paris night crossing, 2016
47.2 x 31.5 x 2 inch
Painting

$5,784

Sergio Ceccotti, Clair-obscur, Painting

Sergio Ceccotti

Clair-obscur, 2008
31.9 x 39.4 inch
Painting

$6,709

Sergio Ceccotti, Intérieur, soir, Painting

Sergio Ceccotti

Intérieur, soir, 2006
39.4 x 31.9 inch
Painting

$6,709

Bluzot Philippe, Banlieue (4) la nuit venue, Painting

Bluzot Philippe

Banlieue (4) la nuit venue, 2012
57.5 x 44.9 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$3,702

Adrien Belgrand, Suwan, Painting

Adrien Belgrand

Suwan, 2014
8.7 x 13 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$1,851

Jin Bo, Look the other side in the passage of time, Painting

Jin Bo

Look the other side in the passage of time, 2014
33.9 x 57.1 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$8,676

Jin Bo, Window, Painting

Jin Bo

Window, 2013
36.2 x 81.1 x 0.8 inch
Painting

$13,881

Monica Fernandez, La Princesa Renegada, Painting

Monica Fernandez

La Princesa Renegada, 2019
63 x 55.1 x 1.6 inch
Painting

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