top of page


Interview on Friday, November 11, 2022 in Aubervilliers about the exhibition "Le fruit est permis" (The Fruit is Allowed)


Mathilde Le Coz: How did you meet? Why did you want to work together? What brings you together in your work?


Leticia Martínez Pérez :We met in 2019 at the Casa Vélasquez residence in Madrid. We both saw each other's work there and we got hooked. There were natural links. There was an attraction. I had seen Garance's paintings at an exhibition at La Villette but I didn't know her at the time. She presented a painting that was like an open house with characters inside. There was this relationship to the game, this relationship she had with the history of art and painting that I liked. At the same time, I got the impression that she painted the things she liked like friends or objects. Then we became friends, we were confined together during lockdown.


Garance Matton:I was immediately drawn to Leticia's work, her colors, her ceramic forms.  I saw them in the studio space and wanted to stage them with Leticia. I arrived in Spain and I needed new models: I wanted to paint Leticia and her sculptures. I did a lot of paintings with her, first by having her pose. Then there was this performance project with Kat (Katarzyna Wiesiolek), myself, objects, parts of her totems and costumes. And I did a lot of paintings from the pictures that Leticia had taken of us during the performance.

Leticia:I also showed you an architecture from my region that you used in one of your paintings. It's as if Garance had fantasized a little about what I had shown her about Mudejar architecture, made by craftsmen of Arab origin who had to convert to Christianity and who worked with ceramics applied in churches. Garance used these motifs in one of her paintings, but in her own way.


Mathilde: All the pieces were created especially for this exhibition - what characterizes this new body of works?


Leticia:I hadn't done ceramics for a long time, I was doing more textile painting or textile sculptures and I wanted to get back to ceramics. In addition it is an exhibition with Garance and it was the ceramic sculptures that connected us, so this show was an opportunity to take up this technique again.


Garance:And you teach me! Leticia teaches me ceramics and shows me things - she is the one who introduces me to this technique. At the beginning, it was me who painted her ceramics, which I staged in my paintings, now I make ceramics with her, and she too will be inspired by the colors of my paintings to color her pieces.


Leticia:I also wanted to borrow certain motifs from Garance's painting: I really liked the checkerboards that she had painted in her canvases and on which she had placed my pieces. And it's true that when I created my totems, for example, I had thought of presenting them on a chessboard. And seeing them on a checkerboard in one of Garance's painting was as if she had recreated my idea, my fantasy. And if Garance placed a checkerboard under my pieces, now I want to put a checkerboard pattern on my sculptures too.

As for this new body of works, I had only once made a plaque applied to the wall and I really liked this idea of a silhouette of symmetrical shapes. It's a bit like a painting. Normally, I do volume but I wanted to make these plaques so that they would be fixed to the wall and create a link with Garance's paintings - showing my sculptures the way paintings are shown.


Mathilde: Garance, you told me that you had liberated yourself a bit in terms of your pictorial style...


Garance:I try to be more evocative, to contain things less. We can talk about liberation but I try to make the patterns I paint less limited. I tended to paint with very clear, well-defined areas and here I want it to be more moving, less literal, less readable


Mathilde: With this exhibition, you are exploring the themes of play, storytelling, magic and it is also something that is found in each of your practices...


Leticia:I try to create open shapes where you can see multiple elements in the same piece. You can see a fruit, a flower, a body part and a character at the same time. For me, it's already a game to create these pieces, it's fun. I mainly make symmetrical sculptures: I started with Rorschach tests with ink to obtain strange silhouettes that I cut out in large format. There are often hidden characters that have been called “elves”. 

Garance:It is certain, it is to fantasize the gardens of delights, the Garden of Eden, all these fantastic worlds.

I think this relationship with Leticia will continue for the long term. There was a beginning, when we were in Spain, then things fit together, this exhibition is a stepping stone but, in my opinion, there will be other times when we will branch off and then meet again. It's pleasant and yet it can be difficult, there can be problems of appropriation for example, but this is not the case.


Leticia:Regarding this question of appropriation, as far as my sculptures that you paint are concerned, they are first of all performance pieces, which have been inhabited, worn - and you represent them often worn, moreover by me. This puts them in another world. From one painting to another, they wander.

Mathilde: Did you look at any particular artists for this exhibition?


Leticia:For ceramics I always refer to Betty Goodman. I'm not close to her but I think she was quite impressive with her shapes and colors. I also watch a lot of contemporary artists, even friends.


Garance:For this exhibition I told you about Neo Rauch for the forms he finds, but I also have an obsession for Kitaj. These two painters manage to integrate signs, forms that fascinate me. And for ceramics, what's interesting is that I usually have all the weight of the history of painting on my shoulders and I know less about this technique, so I feel more free. I don't have references and it's pretty nice.


Mathilde: And finally, what are your next projects for the coming months?


Leticia:I may do a six-month residency in Bilbao, I'm waiting for the answer, and I have a solo exhibition planned in Spain in April. I am thinking of reworking textiles or reintegrating both with ceramics. It will be in Zaragoza, where I come from.


Madder:For my part, I have a collective exhibition planned in Italy in December at the Annarumma gallery.

Légendes : 
1. Atelier de Garance Matton, Poush Manifesto, November 2022
2. Leticia Martinez Perez, Pin, 2018, ceramic with wood and steel support, 160 x 45 x 75 cm et Tetislap, 2018, ceramic with wood and steel support, 202 x 60 x 22 cm 
3. Garance Matton, Le Jardin aux Sentiers qui bifurquent, 2020, oil acylic and spray on canvas 150 x 150 cm 
4. Leticia Martinez Perez, Villa Mandarina, 2018 Ensemble of ceramics, Chouette alors!, Musée de Louviers
5. Garance Matton, La Grande Espagnole, 2019-2020, oil acrylic and spray on canvas, 200 x 270 cm

bottom of page