Cécile Desserle dans son atelier

Artistic approach


I have made my artistic approach a permanent laboratory. I experiment, I mix techniques. I like taking a gamble, going on an evolutionary journey. I put myself on autopilot and get my inspiration from the world around us, thus giving my works of art a multifaceted approach that I am proud of as I have never wanted to stick to just one style. I realised that as a woman, I didn’t want to be confined to a certain category: why would I as a painter?

Cécile Desserle avec ses modèles


Working with models sometimes reminds me of playing with dolls: I get them to play a role, imagine and hope for different moments… As a director would do, I adopt a sensitive approach to the model. I shape them, I need her body to be the interpreter of my projections.

In my life, I have been struck by paintings depicting women. Vermeer playing with shadow and light to better represent their intimacy; Botticelli’s Venus, before which I was overcome with an indescribable emotion; Ingres’ Odalisque, which is both attractive and erotic, as well as trapped, which reminds me of the ever-relevant contrast between standards of beauty, aesthetics, and the helplessness of a submissive woman.

Cécile Desserle travail de la matière


The duality of emotions is always present in my paintings, a kind of opposition between beauty and drama, punctuated by the pulsations of life and death. I express this dramaturgy, dear to Ernest Pignon Ernest, by working with the material, which is marked by the stigma of time passing by. A damaged material, writing half scribbled out, a little as if the memory had gone away, as if a little piece of us was disappearing… The search for perfection and aesthetics seemed to lead to me to a sort of destruction, dissolution of the material… But I always leave marks or imprints, such as open windows so that the spectator can seize this unfinished shape, that is still moving, and can imagine what happens next.

Cécile Desserle et Ernest Pignon Ernest


Ernest Pignon Ernest who attempts the impossible within a sphere of exceptional women, with the simplest of tools as his ally: charcoal, pencils.

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