Pauline Tonglet’s work combines art and fiction, her personal history and a common past, old documents and mixed media, iconographic emotions and artistic construction. Her works can be seen as poetic coverage of a moment of our civilization, of traces and strata of its culture, of our overall culture.
Using old documents collected in the course of chance encounters, old letters vibrant with vanished messages, sewing patterns with their delightful tissue paper and delicate dotted lines, old maps with obsolete borders, and pages from magazines that go so quickly out of fashion but are so telling about our volatile minds, the artist cuts, arranges, organizes by theme and by genre, and intuitively creates a new world with ingredients that can still speak individually but also express an unprecedented reality. Their proximity and new neighbourhoods generate a different message, another truth.
The interest of such patchwork pictures lies not only in the sum of their components, but also in the intuitive intelligence of the ties that they reveal: In one picture the components are united by their formal affinities; in others the links are their chromatic contrast, stylistic kinship, or contagious effect. We can read these collages like genuine poems à la Prévert, accessible to everyone. What do these calligrams tell us? They speak of the mystery of childhood, the fascinating force of Nature, the fear of passing time that devours everything, the journey along the human track, solitude or absence.
Pauline Tonglet lives and works in Namur. She holds a bachelor degree in Graphic Arts from the École Superieure des Arts Saint-Luc in Liège.
Her early creations stemmed from postcards and highly emotionally charged family photographs. She added bits of materials linked to her first memories. With the passage of time and maturity, she left the area of personal albums to invade a broader field of collective visual memory. Her works can now be seen as poetic coverage of a moment of our civilization, of traces and strata of its culture, of our overall culture.
The basis of her work is collage: sometimes the different elements are glued, yet most of the time they are sewed. She essentially works with old documents such as pictures, newspapers, magazines, raffle tickets, sewing patterns or embroidery.