sculptor born in 1964
Hélène Modébadzé in her studio
Photo courtesy of Hélène Modébadzé
Direct Carving on Wood
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Hélène MODÉBADZÉ was born in Paris, France in 1964.
After studying at the Sorbonne University in literature, art expression, and communication, she pursued intensive sculpture trainings from 1998 to 2009:
- Modelling courses at Natasha Mercier’s workshop. - Modelling from live models, molding, drawings, mosaic at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs(ENSAD) in Paris.
- Patina course at Lorenzi’s workshops.
- Modelling from live models at 'Paris Ateliers Association pour le Développement de l'Animation Culturelle' workshops in Paris.
- Direct carving at the 'École des Beaux Arts' workshops in Paris.
Since 2008, she has been working in her studio near Paris, and has participated in numerous group exhibitions.
She was discovered in Parisby a major art promoter who represents her worldwide and invited her to exhibit her sculptures in Paris and New York.
Her stunning sculptures are sought after by the most savvy collectors and appear now in prestigious collections (alongside works of great masters such as Joan Miro and Edgar Degas.)
A WORD BY THE ARTIST
French with Georgian origin, I was born in 1964, in Paris. It is probably the premature death of my father that is at the source of my path towards sculpture. It was the moment when my sensitivity and my empathy for being slowly grew, and when I started to fed the fantasy for universal love. For me, sculptures were immortal beings that would come to life without our knowledge. I enjoyed having my hands in the clay, touching it, molding it…
It was not until much later, reaching adulthood, that I allowed myself to join modeling courses. Since then, I have never stopped sculpting. I was trained in many workshops, including the workshops held by Sabine Andres and Arlette Ginioux at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs (ENSAD).
My real encounter with sculpture was when I discovered direct carving during my four years at Sylvie Lejeunes’ workshop at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. From this experience, I retain discipline, concentration and an infinite happiness.
Direct carving is a solitary, arid and brutal form of art. It is the source of strong emotions. It is a long journey, a trip during which an intense connection is created with the stone or with the wood. Carving is the ultimate gesture that gives birth to the sculpture. Far from the modeling from life models workshops, it has to be well thought out and planned in advance. Its vibration is felt when we see the sculptures: a sensual and musical material deeply rooted in the soul.
I bear my family’s history, a family that was exiled during the Russian Revolution. We learned to love with strength, the resistance with humility. I am troubled by the vulnerability by the thin border between struggle and abandonment, but I would never surrender. I have always been moved by the grace of dancers with their invisible wings, and I stay fascinated by the torso. It is, for me, a land of fire and blood, the crossroads between worlds propitious of wanderings of our minds. It is the brutal and poetic reality of man, the power the breath in a cage, the combative body that resists and surrenders. Sensuality, softness, vulnerability and the sacred are the essences of my works. They are what I look for in my sculpture, whether it is tortured, restrained, like the Pietà.