In 1921 my grandfather, Marek Szwarc (1882-1958), then a young Polish artist recently arrived in Paris, spent the summer in Lectoure, a small, remote town in the south of France. This visit seems to have been to be a pivotal moment in his life, laying the foundations for his identity as an artist based on a very strong linkage between spirituality, faith, and creativity.

I have no memories of my grandfather, as he died when I was very young, but I grew up surrounded by his paintings and sculptures, and I often heard about Lectoure.

In 2013 I spent some time in Lectoure as a way try to better understand how his ideas on the relationship between spirituality and creativity took shape, and, through him, to think of what that means for me.

The following is a selection from works exhibited in Lectoure in the summer of 2014. I presented a selection of Marek's painting made in Lectoure in 1921 and a selection of vintage photographs of other of his early works, together with photographs and videos that I produced during my residency.

Marek Szwarc. View of Lectoure. 1921. Oil on canvas. 26 x 20 inches.

  Abundance 1924(?). Vintage photograph of bas-relief by Marek Szwarc.

Marek Szwarc. Still Life. Lectoure, 1921. Oil on canvas. 26 x 20 inches.

Still life. 2013. Gelatin silver print. 23.5 x 17.5 inches. Edition of 5.

Still life. 2013. Gelatin silver print. 17.5 x 23.5 inches. Edition of 5.

Quest. 2014. 70 minute loop. Silent.

Related Links:

Read Louis Vauxcelles's essay on Marek Szwarc (Artistes Juifs. Le Triangle Editions, Paris.1932)

See the Marek Szwarc website.