bastien × flavien

Bastien and I have two very complimentary approaches to art. Bastien walks a thorough introspective path and expresses what he feels through visual, minimal shapes, colors and textures. His pieces are vibrant and expressive, smoothened by a soft palette.

 

This very special collaboration sits at the crossroads of our worlds. His sense of composition and my knowledge of calligraphy and typography. His abstract interpretation of emotions and my taste for Japanese culture and aesthetics - this is a blend of everything.

 

Just like the 3D glasses of our youth used red and blue lenses to render volume, this collaboration intertwines visions to give life to a new world.

 

We are pleased to present to you this series, and hope you enjoy it as much as we did creating it.

 

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energie art collaboration minimalism abstract expressionism japanese calligraphy mockup interior design simple powerful energy

énergie

 

This piece is a visual reflection around questioning itself, and how it may give us momentum to start an action. Anchored with the Japanese character 勢 (ikioi, momentum, energy, force), it is an invitation to gather the courage to act.

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inner compass

 

The floating leaf at the centre represents innocence, purity and even a certain naiveté. It is who we are when we are born, away from good and evil: with no direction or landmark, floating in the wide of life.

 

To be good and grounded, and to be at peace with our inner worlds, we must trust our inner compasses: they are our stronghold, where to look up to when the winds blow too strong. This is why the leaf floats over four trigrams of the Bagua, the elements of this world: earth, wind, water, and fire. These can be found in Luopan, the Feng shui compass, as well the South Korean flag.

 

In this flag, each element is also a direction: air is East, earth is West, water is North, and fire is South. The cardinal points are also written on this piece: 東西南北, respectively East/West/South/North.

 

In our journey through life, we may float and find an ideal place. Such is one depicted in the idiom 四神相応, a land of wonder, suitable for the four original gods to live.

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art collaboration minimalism abstract expressionism japanese calligraphy mockup interior design inner compass
art collaboration minimalism abstract expressionism japanese calligraphy mockup interior design serendipity

sérendipité

 

縁 (pronounced ‘en’) is the serendipitous connection, the moment the stars align. It is this very rare point in space and time where everything unfolds perfectly. Bastien and Flavien have found a bit of 縁 in their encounter, and thus ‘Sérendipité’ was born.

 

At the heart of this composition is the idea of exchange, of the blend of emotions without which hearts cannot communicate properly. Two minds meet and weave the canvas of a visual conversation. This new world is boundless, just like their joint visions.

 

The colours and shapes of this piece are reminiscent of the golden, Japanese 5 yen coin. Incidentally, it is pronounced 五円 goen, which is a homophone with 御縁, ‘en’ with a honorific attribute. As such, the 5 yen coin is a symbol of good luck. The coin has a hole in its centre, which is alluded to here in the black circle.

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honne / tatemae

 

Here is Bastien and Flavien’s fourth, and (for now) last installment of their visual conversation. ‘Honne / Tatemae’ features a pink shape, whose soft colour and shapes symbolise the ideal version of ourselves, which we project onto the world. It is stamped, tattooed even, with 本音, honne, which in Japanese means the true self, the inner voice.

 

On the side, enclosed in a black circle is 建前, tatemae, the appearances we show.

 

Far from the Western conception of hypocrisy, this dichotomy enhances the sublime effort we make: because we present ourselves in a careful way, we allow society to exist. We let others have their space to be. In Japan, it is most honourable to curate one’s own secret garden to preserve social harmony.

More technical and purchase information about this piece here.

art collaboration minimalism abstract expressionism japanese calligraphy mockup interior design