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Jean Amado, anonymous sculptor

L'autre journal, n°5, May, p.102-103, by Antoine Dulaure


Jean Amado: "At the origin of my sculptures, there is always a very vague idea, or rather an atmosphere. And from this atmosphere emerges - sometimes with difficulty, sometimes easily - an image. But the image itself is never precise enough to be realized. It is more a dream than an image. And, moreover, it is usually only an image of detail, one of the elements of the whole.

From the moment this blurred vision wanders into my brain, the need arises to realize it. But I still need to have a precise idea of what I want to do, since my material - a kind of clay that is formed by hand - is not one of those, such as metal or wood, that can be used immediately in large dimensions.

So the hand comes into play and the first research consists in making tracings, I would even say scribbles, trying to find the sensation of the initial image through the hand.

These first sketches reveal certain events, certain forms. These generally correspond to a mixture of my favorite themes, some of which are expressed more insistently than others and end up imposing themselves. If, at the beginning, for example, I have a rocky element, a cliff, it can become a troglodyte construction. But this image is still fluctuating and from some of its features - the drawing continues and becomes more precise at the same time - another figure may emerge, perhaps that of a boat.

And the more the drawing is worked on, the more different images appear: the animal, the house, can also pass through it. Until one of the elements prevails over the others, without me ever being able to say that I wanted it. From the moment when this element becomes perceptible, it is chosen and worked on to finally arrive at a true architect's outline, with dimensions.

In this final state only three sides of the sculpture are shown, but never the back. I realized this one day and I understood, or thought I understood, that if things happen like this, it's because I don't want to finish them, these sculptures, not to close them. As soon as you close something on yourself it becomes an object. But I would like to make landscapes and a landscape is never closed. So I leave myself this exit door so as not to close it until the moment when I am always annoyed, when I have to finish, that is to say, put the last pieces.

I was certainly particularly touched by the situation of the character in Kafka's short story, The Burrow, who was wandering around in his underground tunnels and at the same time continually closing off the exits. And every time his protection seemed to disappear, he would make a new exit. It's a bit like me: I like to make protections, but they are not closures. 

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