Painting is an infinite search that fascinates me. Painting pushes me to question, to progress, to flourish.
––Benoît Havard, Painter
Benoit Havard, a French cityscape oil painter, creates dreamy, luminescent urban landscapes that radiate warmth and energy. Bold colors are blended and smoothed with a palette knife to capture animated moments in time. He describes his oil paintings as “hyper accessible and dynamic” like a window into a vivid memory.
Havard has been painting since he was only six years old. He fondly recalls his mother taking him to art galleries and museums as a child where he was drawn to work swelling with energy like that of French landscape painter Michel Jouenne. Harvard took several classes at Cherbourg School of Fine Arts, but ultimately decided to pursue art on his own. By age 19, he was painting full-time, first exploring watercolors on trips to Morocco and eventually settling into working with oils and a palette knife. The artist is most attracted to the urban landscape because of its dynamic possibilities: layered lighting, colors and perspectives. Havard capitalizes on this possibility with the knife itself, playing with transparency, streaks, and fades to create texture and movement. It is only at the very end of his process that he highlights details, allowing the shapes of an urban scene to emerge.
Havard exhibits throughout France. His artworks can be found in notable private collections, including that of Louis Vuitton and the Mauresmo family.