Based in Mulhouse, France, the abstract painter Kean seduces the viewer with the flawless perfection of his gradients. Presented in a vast range of colours, his landscapes project a rare sensuality — the result of years spent refining his technique.
Completely self-taught, Kean started out as a graffiti artist. Fascinated by the colour gradients in the backgrounds of his graffiti, it was the practice of photography that led him to develop the distinctive white borders that frame his compositions. American Colour Field artists have been a major influence on the artist’s style, together with the California Light and Space movement.
A master of gradients, Kean’s subtle colour blending involves meticulously overlaying thin layers of paint to give his abstract landscapes their density. Through the oval of a porthole, the sharp-edged square of a window or the vertical opening of a door, he invites the viewer in to dream, contemplate and escape, with the canvas acting as a window into a parallel dimension.
Kean was born in 1988 and currently lives and works in Mulhouse. He is a French painter. Initially, Kean showcased his creative talent in urban spaces as a graffiti artist. Gradually, he moved away from the walls of the city to focus on canvas painting. His abstract landscapes impress with their immaculate perfection of gradients. Presented in vast and enticing ranges of colors, they immerse us in different atmospheres, each exuding a rare sensuality. His works are the result of a method patiently developed, intertwined with his various artistic practices.
Initially, Kean was fascinated by the colorgradients that enlivened the backgrounds ofhis graffiti, on which he began to focus,gradually abandoning lettering. The artist alsofelt the need to capture through photographythe intense sensations triggered by the sightof a landscape, the contemplation of distanthorizons, and the observation of subtlevariations of light and colors in the skythroughout the day and night. Photographyled Kean to develop formal constants for hispainting, such as dividing the surface with ahorizon line at the lower third of thecomposition, as well as framing his canvaseswith white margins, like a print.
Kean's paintings showcase a great mastery ofgradients, which he expresses in a verynuanced way through subtle color blending.These colors overlap in thin layers of paint, inorder to blend into each other seamlessly.This long and patient process gives the artist'sabstract landscapes their density, evoking thedeep blue of a night sky, the orange-yellow ofa scorching summer sun, or the rosy hues of asunrise. Kean's paintings are an invitation toescape, with the canvas symbolically servingas a window opening onto another world. Thetransition from the real world to theimaginary and dreamlike world is materializedby the artist through the contours thatsurround his gradients, abstractly recallingthe oval shape of a porthole, thequadrangular shape of a window, or thevertical shape of a door.
Self-taught, Kean has developed a highlypersonal approach that has led him fromgraffiti to abstraction. His expertise ingradients and color nuances is endowedwith a strong emotional power,encouraging the viewer to dream andcontemplate. In this regard, Kean's worksare part of the legacy of the AmericanColor Field movement, but above all ofthe California Light and Space movement,whose artists, such as the famous JamesTurrell, have made the study ofperceptual phenomena, particularly lightand space, central to their concerns.