The Golden Age

Tak­ing the theme of The Nev­erend­ing Story, Yoann Loss el cre­ates a strik­ing piece of art in a pure Golden Age of Il­lus­tra­tion aes­thetic

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Contents -

Yoann Los­sel paints with gold.

The il­lus­tra­tors of the Golden Age, the Sym­bol­ist painters and the Pre-Raphaelites all passed through my imag­i­na­tion and in­flu­enced my art. There’s a wide pal­ette of emo­tions in th­ese images tinted with lyri­cism and sprin­kled with sym­bol­ism. I like the or­na­men­tal friezes of Hein­rich Le­fler, the move­ment of Rack­ham, the po­etry of Du­lac, the lights of Doré, the soft­ness of Water­house, the strength of Böck­lin and the great clas­si­cal top­ics of Alma-Tadema.

Art Nou­veau, Art Deco and the Arts and Craft move­ments quickly filled up my in­flu­ences, tak­ing things into an eth­i­cal di­men­sion, a re­flec­tion about art and crafts. All th­ese painters, all th­ese move­ments, pushed me to­ward the cre­ation of a stu­dio in a 1900s’ spirit, an old bind­ing press fac­ing a beau­ti­ful lectern. I grew to be a lover of old tech­niques, col­lect­ing books of oil paint­ings. My old house in Brittany pro­vides a con­ve­nient at­mos­phere: an­cient, lyric, re­lax­ing.

Fe­bru­ary 2015

I’ve been work­ing with graphite and gold leaf for many years now, cre­at­ing bright or­na­men­ta­tions or golden back­grounds. This ap­proach en­ables me to cre­ate the il­lu­sion of depth, de­spite the two-di­men­sional can­vas. I like to add a nat­u­ral touch, a bit of a wild world, sym­bol­ised by the petals that I fas­ten on pa­per. This com­bi­na­tion of pa­per, graphite, gold and hy­drangea petals pleases me and makes a lot of things pos­si­ble.

Ev­ery year, the Gallery 1988 or­gan­ises a show that fea­tures art­work in­spired by clas­sic cult films. When I was asked to par­tic­i­pate in this ex­hi­bi­tion (Crazy 4 Cult, held in Los An­ge­les), I choose to il­lus­trate The Nev­erend­ing Story in a Golden Age spirit. I hadn’t seen the movie in many years, and I was sur­prised how it af­fected me and the strength of its mes­sage. Gold leaf will per­fectly suit the Auryn pat­tern, and I will ex­plore the fan­tas­tic land­scapes of the book with graphite, be­cause Falkor the Luck­dragon is al­ready be­com­ing ob­vi­ous to me.

This im­age will de­mand lots of work on nu­ances sup­ported by dif­fer­ent graphite tech­niques, es­pe­cially on land­scapes be­cause they need a spe­cific depth. An im­por­tant con­sid­er­a­tion will also be needed on this golden pat­tern of the Auryn, the dou­ble ourobouros that I’m keen to de­pict. This sym­bol is at once of great in­ter­est and evoca­tive. I have in mind to un­fold it, to open it to see what it’s hid­ing there...

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