Born and raised in Armentieres in the North of France, Chalavie (aka Charlotte Vanhaecke) is a multi genre artist based in Los Angeles who loves to experiment and challenge herself. Inspired by life, her work is an exploration of different styles and techniques.
About my latest artwork - started in late 2018 until now
Chalavie’s recent paintings depicts scenes of the everyday life, as seen through a fishbowl. Her isolated characters are as much observers of the world as the viewer who see them from the outside.
Her work is rendered in a cool, desaturated palette, and made recognizable by its oddly flat perspective and eerily quiet scenery. As such, its contemplative dimension evokes all at once a sense of deep calm and of darker turmoil, reminiscent of the unsettling serenity of Ed Hopper’s work.
As someone fascinated by the visual richness of the unnoticeable things, Chalavie uses simple observations as her starting point: scenes of her everyday life, photographs, images, snapshots, stories, street captures, people, strangers, encounters. Whatever her eyes come across, she unapologetically but lovingly cuts it out of their environment, to transport it into her world within the four walls of her canvas.
Chalavie’s work revolves around a complementarity between focused detailed subjects and simplified perspectives, relying on a subtle contrast between texture and smoothness and on a constant play on layers and flatness. In doing so, Chalavie ultimately creates a sense of timelessness and spacelessness that pleases the eye as much as it intrigues. The strange quietness of her atmospheres makes ample room for contemplation, reflection and meditation, yet this vastness is unsettling, because it isolates the subjects as much as it appears to wrap and protect it.
Somewhat soothing, somewhat disturbing, Chalavie’s work thus questions the thin threshold that exists between serenity and isolation, between solitude and loneliness.