The oeuvre is, like the man himself, authentic, impressive and absolutely natural. It is averse to, with trends, fashions or fine words that obscure more than they clarify.
The indefinable dimension Jan Desmarets introduces into his work, makes it an unusual and a unique part of the figurative tradition: flowing lines, the illusion of eternal movement and its irresistible dynamics.
He himself controls the whole creative process. Like a craftsman, he subdues and masters the secrets of matter and, as in the ancient accounts of the Creation, he takes an inert mass, and shapes and breaths life into it. Spontaneously and intuitively, he forces the idea to assume a tangible and recognizable form. He models the clay on image and resemblance, handles the soft wax that is consumed by fire and captures the glowing bronze in the void it leaves behind.
And, just like a birth, on each occasion there is the tension of waiting until the body slowly cools down, because only then can it be stripped to reveil its rough-hewn secrets.
Success? Or failure?
An alloy like bronze cannot always be manipulated at will. Once stripped, it must be cleaned, polished, composed, welded; it must be given a new skin. Finishing is always a challenging work too. Refreshed ideas bubble up, unexpected shapes are born, a new inventive manipulation seems to be required. Each surprising question is in need of an answer. It never ends. Parts are lacking and holes appear, and this absence of elements give a certain mystery of timelessness to the whole. As if the sculptures had been lost in distant times and had only recently been cast up by the sea or the earth.
Age-old sculptures, sculptures of the present, sculptures of all ages. Sculptures for people, made to their measure, created for their environment, corresponding to their imagination. A sculpture has only really succeeded if it is an improvement on its absence.
The perfect harmony between the imagined movement on the one hand, the matter and the natural patina on the other prove that Jan Desmarets has mastered the techniques of sculpture in a personalized and brilliant way.
He works intuitively, idiosyncratically, giving free rein to his quest for subtle tension and expressive attitude, but knows how to recognize and release artistic perfection at the right moment. At each stage of creation, from the wax model to the final bronze, the artist's fingerprints are visible.
The wax drop,
the broken down casting channel,
the grinding groove,
again and again, he reveals a new step with each intervention. You can visually participate in the creation process.