Sylvain Levier: ‘Soothing skin’

Soothing skin

Back in 2019, when Debsaysyes proposed me to join its art foundation, I was experimenting with new materials and combinations between them. As is often the case in my work, nothing was premeditated when I found, in a drawer, a box of iron oxide powder that I had bought ten years ago.

I thought to myself, what is this? When I opened the box, I opened a world, a strange world.

I remember very well, I stared at this material for long minutes.

Getting a deep blackness was not my goal, but that’s what happened after a few tries. The depth of the blackness was not the most interesting thing to me. The iron oxide, once applied to the paper, formed a thin skin that changed its appearance depending on the light.

The works available on this website are among my very first achievements using this technique. I wanted to get something as simple as possible, direct, which leaves place for matter and intuition. The masking tape you see in the visual is all that remains of that moment. This fragment of a work tool was part of the actual process that led to the works available on Debsaysyes.

At the time I’m writing these few lines, the streets are empty, empty of human beings, everything has become calm again. Due to the Covid-19 epidemic, containment has been required in France for two weeks now.

Silence has recovered its place, and despite this invisible threat, it seems to me that things are getting more livable.

Do we have to face death to realize that our current lifestyles are getting us nowhere?

Slow down,

I’m listening to the birds.

Sylvain Levier,
Paris, France, March 2020


This post is also available in: Engels