Le Journal des Arts
9 October 2009

Fine feathers

Beau comme une plume | Le Journal des Arts (presse_adp) {JPEG}

Entitled " L’atelier du peintre" (the Artist’s studio), the ninth offering from Cirque Plume revisits classic paintings from the history of Western art in a show that is crazy, poetic, moving and full of humour. " Plic Ploc ", the previous production from the modern circus company that was formed in 1984, created the world of a drop of water. This time it’s painting and the creative process. The act of painting has not only been used as a pretext for the scenery and costumes, but seems to have been behind the acts down to the tiniest detail of their composition. Acrobats, jugglers, clowns and musicians take up the gestures and tools of the painter, producing as many pictures as delightful sketches in which, on the ground and up in the air, a collector meets his secretary, a painter his confidant, an odalisque meets a circus entertainer, a statue encounters a dancer… Each routine can be seen as a more or less direct reference to paintings, be it the Odalisque by Ingres, Las Meninas by Velasquez, Klein’s blue work or shots fired at a canvas in the style of Niki de Saint Phalle. But, above all, it’s a celebration of the freedom of the creative act, the pleasure and the pain it engenders, as in the aerial strap routine that shows the artist, beside himself, in the grip of night-time torment.
It’s a situation to which the figures executed on the trampoline seem to respond, positively, from which red petals emerge like bursts of colour and joy. The beauty of the gesture doesn’t take anything away from the technical prowess of the acrobats, using the German wheel to perfection, the trampoline, straps and trapeze. It’s all staged as part of a permanent dialogue between the various forms that creativity can take: the plastic arts, performing arts and music, with the latter playing a vital part thanks to compositions by Robert Miny.

Daphné Bétard