Our glance at
Jean DelageSee the works
Jean Delage was born in Dordogne in 1920 (Saint-Pierre-de-Frugie) and his native landscapes will always remain important : quiet and peaceful feelings when time takes its time!
When a young man, he attends artistic classes at the Fine Arts School in Paris then, at the Decorative Arts School : Maurice Brianchon and François Desnoyer in particular will be his teachers. Jean Delage passes his teaching exam and then teaches drawing at the Mignet Junior High School in Aix en Provence where he makes his entire career. In the meantime, he builds with constancy major personal artworks.
In Aix, the artist meets with André Masson, Pierre Tal-Coat (who becomes a close friend) and the ceramists Jean Amado or Jean Périer. He also meets with Jean Messagier, René Duvillier and others.
From 1947, Jean Delage takes part in several groups' exhibitions in Provence but also abroad (Spain, Germany). It's interesting to point out that the Cantini Museum in Marseilles acquires one of his works in 1965, and that in 1967 few of his works are hung next to Calder's, Mario Prassinos', Messagier's or André Masson's as part of the Perspectives Group Exhibition in Aix-en-Provence. It's also in Aix, in 2003 at the Gallery Bercker that takes place one of his last exhibits showing his works.
A little bit, the way Jean Capdeville is, Jean Delage is what we could call a « deep river » or an « underbrush » painter. Light reflections on clear waters, cold water ripples but invigorating, stimulating as life is when one has measured its value. Waterfalls, barks, places where harmony are mixed with water environment, minerals or green settings. Jean Delage's work make us think about « Walden or the life in the wood » by Henry David Thoreau, extraordinary book with great life philosophy.
Jean Delage will share his time between Dordogne and Aix, two necessary magnets.
His art needs to be compared to the lyric abstraction movement very popular in the 50s and the 60s. Reasoning does not have its place, calligraphy and lyricism take all their meaning. The work, improvised, is often realized instanteneously following different technical gestures but always personal and intuitive.
Jean Delage liked to fish in the river. His intimist works talk about meditation, silence and peace of mind taught by his true Masters: who knows better than a blade of grass how to bend without breaking? Who teaches better than a watercourse how to wind? Who knows better than a tree how to be serene?