Kamel Berkouk

A French artist, born in Mulhouse, in 1967.  Graduated from the Ecole des Beaux-Arts.  As a part of the contemporary Primitivism movement, Berkouk has brought to life wonderful images, metaphorical and full of humor, exploring human tendencies. To tell the story about us, human beings, the artist employs the images of animal world: birds, elephants, donkeys, cats imbue his paintings and express feelings and emotions.

The exhibition observes the evolution of Berouk’s artistic manner: from multi-figured compositions to laconic images, from the palette of local colors to a more nuanced color range. His palette mainly consists of bright open colors; but applied as half-transparent layers, they produce an interesting effect of color combination. Strong thick contours underline the colors and bring additional energy to an image (e.g. Bengali Royal). Berkouk’s universe has evolved; by simplifying he has gained strength.

As many others primitivist artists, Berkouk has tendency to employ red color widely, which allows him to create striking images, beautiful and meaningful at the same time. Here is a king bird Bengali Royal - the large red bird with a crown occupies almost the whole canvas – it pulls all our attention and manifests I’m Here, Don’t Miss Me. Don’t we behave sometimes the same way? However, even when Berkouk tells about some human weaknesses, he does it with big love to us, people. The artist reminds us that everyone has a small kid deeply inside, and he appeals to them

Also, Berkouk’s recent collection presents the works performed only in black and white, where he continues the tradition, stemming from Cezanne and Picasso, of exploring the form of an object.

Words cannot describe.