In conversation with Paris based artist Louisa Marajo. Originally from Martinique, a small island in the Caribbean, Louisa studied at the Ecole supérieure d’Art et de Design de Saint-Etienne and later did a Masters at La Sorbonne, Paris.
Can you talk about your journey into or interest the arts?
I have always drawn. Since my childhood, I drew on the college tables. For me, art it’s like sport, it’s a drug. At 15, I took drawing and painting lessons at ‘Sermac’ in Martinique with my teacher Daniel Accamah. At 18, I moved to Saint-Etienne to study art. Art is in my blood.
Do you use a sketchbook? I’m interested in what a sketchbook means to you and your work or how people develop their ideas?
Yes, I do. My sketchbooks allow me to draw lines that reflect my thoughts. These lines are structured but in a chaotic, complex atmosphere. My sketchbooks are simple where I write every things (like texts, things like poems…). I often reread my sketchbooks to immerse myself in my memories traces and repeat them again but differently.
Your work has a clear link to the found or salvaged object, what are you exploring though this?
I use a lot of salvaged objects because there is a memory inside and I try to move it, multiply it. There are some remains of events. So, I think that a found object is not dead and can live again. The life’s flux is not dead.
My work refers to Kurt Schwitters, Rauschenberg and other artists who work with energy of life.
The idea of the landscape, or seascape also recurs in your work, can you talk about this as an interest or theme?
Landscape is for me the way through the flow of life. You walk into a world and try to get out of it. Try to breathe, if I can say that.
Seascapes are the same with more chaos. With seascape, you can feel how liquid life is. The sea mixes all the memories and makes them resurface. We come from the sea and will return to the sea like ocean dust.
Can you talk about your process of working. How do you work, how often, is there a particular pattern?
I work every day because I think all the time. Sometimes I close my eyes to make a pause and, in my dreams, I find ideas that I draw in my sketchbook. It’s not linear, it’s just feeling. Sometimes, I read a lot of books and when I’m bored I prefer to move, to have a physical activity with my body. That’s when I prefer to make big drawings or big installations: to feel a physical sensation.
Do you find the process of creating work relaxing or therapeutic? I’ve become increasingly interested in the relationship of the sketchbook and the work to the artist.
I think to process of creating is therapeutic because you create a new world that you propose to this one. So, you multiply the world and allow people make the same when they look at it. Like that, you can fly and find freedom.