3 July 2014
By Melinda Paquin
Edited by Amy Pettifer
Photos by Philip Sayer, Marina Castagna and Sapphire Goss
Marine Duroselle is an artist and graphic designer whose work is colored by the itinerant adventures of her past; she grew up primarily in Lima, Peru, before living in Paris, New York and now London, where she is currently settled.
Marine knew she had found her calling and passion when - aged 17 and living in New York - she was inspired by a friend to attend Saturday drawing classes at Parsons New School for Design in Greenwich Village. While drawing didn't interest her, she wanted to explore and experiment, eventually signing up for Graphic Design which she instantly loved. "I felt as though my imagination suddenly opened up while working and playing in that field," she remembers, "I started surprising myself - things came out that I didn't expect!"
Influences on her work date back to learning to read French and Spanish simultaneously in Lima. In nursery school, recipe cards and cookbooks were the primary tools for language studies, so Marine associates imagery of food with letters and learning. Other influences include the architecture, textiles, colors and patterns absorbed on her travels, as well as her family, whose achievements in the academic world of textiles, archaeology and anthropology have all shape her aesthetic - a world of vibrant shades, natural materials and elemental shapes.
Tying all these influences together is the presence of the alphabet as a recurring motif in her work. "The alphabet is always shifting and unfolding, taking on different shapes and forms but all in a relative way to the 24 letters," Marine explains. "I appreciate this system of organization and cataloguing, and I'm fascinated by the fact that one letter can be associated with so many words in so many different languages. It's fun, playful and personal. Each of the 24 letters are characters themselves with so much personality and shape-shifting ability - the way each letter is crafted there are infinite possibilities. I think of the alphabet as elements of a tool box for my work."
Rarely drawing simply for pleasure, most of Marine's current work is inspired by an outside force or set of guidelines from a client; recent projects include exhibition graphics and publications for the Design Museum, Royal Festival Hall, RIBA, Jewish Museum and Royal College of Art in London. She has no favorite tools per se, but does engage and create using multiple materials before producing a finished piece.
For her collaboration with Saturday Market Project for example, Marine created a set of rubber stamps by experimenting with cutting shapes from paper, foil and fabric; "sometimes they don't always cut out in the way you're expecting, so rather than me drawing them, it's easier for me to think almost in 3D."
By exploring with the same shape and using several different methods to extrapolate context and determine meanings, Marine both finds the best way of working and can incorporate the happy accidents inspired by the way materials behave. "I'm constantly discovering and learning new things, she says, "and I love getting lost in the rapidity of new, changing technologies."
Marine's first gallery solo exhibition opened at Marsden Woo gallery in London on the 26th June 2014. The show, titled Preview of Shades includes works on paper, risograph printing, photography and ceramics and runs until the 31st July 2014. www.marsdenwoo.com