image

I am returning to these ten Cézanne drawings without knowing exactly what draws me back to them so frequently. They are studies after the figure of Bellona in the Rubens painting ‘Apotheosis of Henri IV’ which hangs in the Louvre. Cézanne made them over a thirty year period presumably while visiting the museum. Fifteen years ago, I was trying to make sense of something Cézanne or Gasquet said about his desire to become “a sensitized plate.”  I think, for a little while, it helped me sketch out a tense historical sequence passing through Bézier, Casteljau, Citroën, Renault, a woodworkers strike, automation, labor. Something stillborn setting into motion so much mourning.