Henri Lamy is a self-assured painter who has learned through the years that spontaneity is the most relevant way to communicate in this our world. He does not remember the past because he is firmly engaged in the present and his north star will always be ‘doing whatever he likes’. Henri is a unique individual because from an early age he was drawn to people who did not fit into so-called society and he was extremely fascinated by facial expressions. A truly ‘mobile’ person in every sense of the word, Henri has developed, along with his traditional painting, a versatile form of expression where he uses Capoeira to spontaneously create works of art. He actually does this live at some exhibitions (one coming up on October 1st, 2015 – Opening of Taverne Gutenberg art residence in Lyon) – a video of this can be seen further on in this feature. It is always invigorating to come across an artist that creates with reckless abandon and is proud of it. The results are simply breathtaking and a must see.
“My brain does not work like that. I don’t remember many things because I mostly focus …”
Please tell us a little about yourself – your childhood, siblings, where you grew up, what you liked as a child, strange thoughts as a child/now, unique attributes, where you live now, etc.?
I was born in Lyon. As a child I started to walk on my hands just because I was bored or sad. I also drew a lot for the same reasons. I listened to a lot of rap music. I liked rap because I felt the rappers could express better than I could their differences from society. I was also fascinated with homeless people I was half scared and half amazed by the way they were out of the common scheme of things.
How do you describe your form of art and how you have recently tied it with Capoeira?
I don’t have much artistic knowledge, but I’d say that my technique is between impressionism and street art. The first one because I tend to accumulate the strokes of pallet knife which fragments the picture into different colors. And the second one because I tend to paint fast, and spontaneously. See Henri Lamy’s spontaneouslibing and Capoeira video directly below:
What does your art mean to you?
To me art means realizing your dreams by being yourself, meaning it makes you understand who you are.
Your art focuses on facial expressions in a colorful and unique way – why does your art focus on this?
I used to be fascinated with faces when I was younger. And then I would paint or draw these faces, focusing on what their glance would reveal about their past, to me.
What is the worst critique you have ever received about your work? What is the best compliment that you have received about your work?
My brain does not work like that. I don’t remember many things because I mostly focus on the present. And worst critiques can sometimes be the best. This person told me that he thinks I don’t spend enough time on every painting that I create. My answer is just spontaneity makes me paint fast.
Which artist/s has/have influenced you the most?
Lucian Freud for his vision of the human being. But mostly, I just catch things here and there, and mix them in my head with my own experiences. Then I paint.
Why do you think your work resonates so much in Asia?
I have found that spontaneity is the way people communicate with each other. I like it. Also, I’ve always wanted to travel. Travel feeds my eyes and my heart. This means Asia was just there to embrace my work when I travelled there just like America or Africa could one day.
Since Style.No.Chaser is a men’s lifestyle magazine, what attributes/items/clothing /etc. do you think define a man or that you think every man should have?
I have a ring that was blessed by a monk in Thailand, and given to my friend Narong. He then gave it to me and I felt Ganesh (which is on the ring), could protect me. In a Capoeira sphere people could call that Patua, it’s like an amulet or something that keeps you safe.
Do you listen to music as you work? If yes, what do you tend to listen to?
Yes – Rap, Reggae and Capoeira.
What is your personal life philosophy (what words keep you going)?
Do what you like.
Who dead or alive, celebrity or not, artist or not, would you like to go on a two week road trip with and why?
Maybe my granddad – it’s been a while I did not see him. Salut Bernard!
How can people learn more about your current and upcoming works?
I have this project called Taverne Gutenberg. It’s located in Lyon. It opens on October 1st, 2015. It is a Capoeira painting performance with an exhibition. Also check my website: www.henrilamy.fr
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