Richard Orlinsky, Off the Beaten Path
Richard Orlinski is in a race against time, a pace set by his fruitful imagination. He does not dream anymore, he acts upon them. He breaks the rules and steps off the beaten path as his accessible and reachable art is an undeniable proof. The precocious child frightened by death now carves his inner revolt in three dimensions. The sculptor plays with materials, transparency, and colours, turning violence into aesthetic and raw materials into outstanding artworks. The spotlight is indeed upon Richard Orlinski, but it is within the privacy of his Parisian flat that he invited us to share his vision of art.
Richard Orlinski, how do you feel about being the world’s highest selling French artist?
I feel grateful, but it is in no way an achievement. The true reward, way beyond the awards, is in my relationship with the audience. I feel tremendously proud when youngsters are stimulated by the messages I try to convey, when students pick my art as an end-of-year subject, when people are so invested in my art that they become collectors for the very first time. This means the world to me, more than any awards.
You were born in Paris and you still live here. Do you feel like having an ambassadorial role for France?
Absolutely. France is not well positioned on the global art market. As one of the rare French artists benefiting from an international popularity, I try to uphold France reputation abroad. But it is not an easy task since foreign countries are quite protectionist.
What do you still feel mesmerised by in France?
I am an unconditional fan of France. All my friends are telling me to leave, especially with the current tax pressure here, but I am deeply attached to my country. I feel grateful about being able to travel so easily, but it is such a treat to come back, to enjoy the banks of the Seine and the Parisian architecture. I feel very Parisian, it is a complex of mine, but each city has its own character of course. There are still endless potentials. We are lucky enough to benefit from a deep history, a real culture and a true ‘savoir-vivre’.
How would you define art?
Art is universal in my opinion, whether being in forms of writing, music, dance, painting, sculpture, culinary art, etc. Each and every form makes a whole. Just take a pencil, be bold enough to suggest something… that is already art, whatever the level or market quotation.
Where does your inspiration come from?
From anywhere and everywhere! Great masters such as Andy Warhol, Keith Haring or Roy Lichtenstein are my inspirations – they shook up the whole artistic scene. But also from my own experiences, my environment, the industry, French history, wars in general, as well as violence.
Let’s talk about your wild animals, where do they come from and what are their stories?
I work on their wild instinct as well as human nature. My bestiary is all about my “Born Wild” concept. I turn violence into aesthetic, a negative drive into a positive feeling. Nature is readjusted according to my vision of it. The proportions of my animals are perfect. My crocodile is completely different from a real one – its tail, body, and mouth, have equal dimensions. Always in action, in motion, and without any base, my sculptures are very expressive. I am totally fascinated by these wild beasts, I feel limitless and
I am even about to create a T-Rex! My message is: Men kill needlessly while animals have a vital reason to do so. Men have always wanted to control beasts, but I want to show how much we can learn from them.
And what are your latest news regarding sculpture?
For the whole summer, I exhibited at the lovely Domaine de Chamarande, in Essonne. From September 15 to November 15, I will be exhibiting at Village Royal in Paris. Large-scale sculptures will be taking up the whole space. With the help of the owners, Groupe Poch, I will shake up this charming place, but slightly hidden and somehow unknown to Parisians. “Village Royal by Richard Orlinski” will become a recurrent event. Next December, I will be the only French artist participating in the No Commission project organised by Swizz Beatz, Alicia Keys’ husband, as part of Art Basel show in Miami. In addition, the ‘Festival du film de comédie de l'Alpe d'Huez’ – a Comedy Movie Festival – will take place next January, and I’ve been asked to create the trophies for their twentieth anniversary.
Interview courtesy of "Entre Luxe and Prestige" magazine: www.luxeetprestige.tv/en