« Boire de Loire et Verdiaux », oil on canvas, 100 x 100 cm

La Rivière pour se connaître

From my childhood, the awakening to daydreaming was revealed near the great river that bathes my village. By the moving water, clear and calm, poetry originated in me. The contemplation of the constantly renewed image of the river became my inner quest.

Every year, I waited for the summer holidays at my maternal grandparents' home to immerse myself in this bath of freedom that are the shores of the river, an inexhaustible source of experiences and visions for my young eyes. How many times have I tried, on the sunny shorelines, to seize a handful of sand whose grains ran imperceptible between the folds of my fingers?

The myriads of particles falling on other myriads overwhelmed me and filled me with humility. My thoughts were lost in the vast illusory and elusive, forcing me to seek an answer in the depths of myself. From then on, a path would open, gradually, other than that of my senses : that of « feeling things » resulting from an inner impulse and revealing certainties. Drawing, naturally became the tool of my investigation. I was seeking a language while immersing myself in the changing impressions of the river.

I learned to leave the limits of the visible to live « the River », symbol of the current of thought. I was a wandering traveler along this invisible river, more real than the flowing stream, its uncertain banks, its shores shaded by large willows and wild poplars. How many times have I gone from the « Other Side », on the opposite shore, that I painted pursuing this mysterious elsewhere full of hopes and pictorial promises?

I finally left the appearances of the Loire to find this authentic river of joy that flows through me, where the slightest touch of color on the painted canvas causes an indefinable sensation of Reality. The harmony of the river is the very real source, well established in the depths of ourselves, it awaits the Awakening. Painting is the mystical link. When evening falls on the Loire, tepid after a summer day or damp with the mists of autumn, I feel the harmony necessary for the creation come into me. So, Michelangelo’s thought comes to me: « I don’t know where I’m going, how I’m going, or why, what leads me to the goal is another than me, but I walk dazzled by unknown presence. »

Jacques OUSSON

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