Victor tells us about his erotic painting :
I like to quote Picasso on erotism and pornography in art. Picasso once said : "Art is not chaste when it is, it's not art anymore". Although you should also mind the context of this quotation. When saying this, Picasso meant that art is dangerous when someone is unsufficiently prepared to it. I'd go further by stating that not only the audience must stand prepared to art, but also the artist himself. There is in my opinion nothing more difficult, when making art, than expressing a pornographical vision with refinement and sensitivity. I'm a dissident in the way that I use some academical techniques of classical art in my erotic works. I thus try and get the public to revise their judgement on society and to question their behavior. Nowadays sex is everywhere : in the media, in the street, in medicine, in litterature and even in politics, with for instance the Lewinski scandal But still, censorship has never been so straight. The social norm will always try to fix once and for all what is acceptable and what is not. Whereas for an artist, limits are precisely unacceptable : you can't confine artistic creation to a series of norms and standards.
Take for example "The Origin of the World" by Courbet, a work of art that I was lucky enough to see at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. You can give several interpretations to this painting. Some people are completely shocked by it; others are very enthousiastic; still others don't know what to think of it. This is in my opinion what makes pornographical art so interesting : it constantly fluctuates between obscenity and erotism, and between expressing the true nature of the body or sublimating it. Pornography itself is very old a concept. What's new however is that pornographical works of art have become regular products. This can explain why the artistic quality of mass production pornography is so poor. You just simply cannot consider art as being consumable. Art and the sacred do come together : when making art, you're never far away from a cult, contemplation or ceremonial.
I sometimes feel that erotic art has become meaningless. Making erotic art does not necessarily implies the artist's vulgarity or lack of skills. Creating a highly cultural erotic work of art is absolutely possible I mentionned Courbet, whom I admire infinitely. But he isn't the only artist who expressed himself through erotic art. Picasso, Dali, Egon Schiele and Klimt, just to name a few, all have refused to tune down their art and to confine it to soft erotism. I think that an artist who embarks in creating erotic works of art is taking great risks, even today. Obviously erotic art is well tolerated nowadays, but not when it denounces the present strictness in society. You can find pornography very easily today : pornography is available because it's profitable. But it's far from being a good quality or sensitive pornography. Everyone is suffering from this : those who are eager to find good quality pornography (more and more women tend to appreciate it) don't find any. And those who find the pornographical building-up outrageous get even more reasons to be shocked at it. Eventually, the only people who take advantage of the situation are those who make big profits out of it… The 'Petits Portraits' exhibition is my way of standing up against all this.
I would like to reconcile the art lovers with the erotic art. Of course, the subjects which I painted can shock; but a painting in itself is neither disgusting nor vulgar. It is a kind of encouragement to get out of the passivity, the slowness, to enter in the game of the art and play hide-and- seek with it.