Sophie Donatien

Sophie Donatien

Sophie Donatien


    Sophie Donatien




    I am a French Caribbean artist, born in the city of Fort-de- France, Martinique, on october 1967.

    I studied painting at the Beaux-Arts in Florence, Italy, and art history at the Ecole du Louvre in Paris. I taught art in a private atelier for many years. When I was a child, I was always drawing and the observation of tropical nature opened me up to color and light. To me, art is what connects my self to feelings and emotions. Painting is self discovery as well as connecting to Mother Nature. The search for exotic vegetation arises my creativity and nature’s imaginative power feeds me. I harvest grains, pick up wilted leaves and flowers. Doing so reminds me that, along with Time’s complicity, Earth always ends up taking back her creations, hence my participation to « Gaia : The Origin » with Tempus Fugit Velut Umbra, a reference to Kronos, Sky and Earth’s last son. I also collect waste material which I incorporate into my creations, in an effort to mark man’s trace on the environment. My main means of expression are mostly through painting ( acrylic, oil, mixed media ), drawing, as well as poetry for its metaphoric power so familiar to creole culture. I mix figurative and abstract, representation and upcycling to share my feeling. Art can be compared to coffee or tea. Vegetation is reality, liquid boiling, the artist and the infusion is the work of art, a beverage from which  each one tastes the aroma according to their sensibility.



    1990 Salon d’Automne Paris

    1991 Stamperia Pistelli Firenze

    2001 Regards et Métamorphoses Dillon Distillery Martinique

    2004 Cluny Hall County Martinique

    2019 Lions Caritatifs Arts Chanteclerc Villa Martinique

    2020 Salon d’Automne selection

    2020 Couleur, Lumière, Transformation Institut Tenri Paris



    Artistic Statement


    « Two people’s encounter is like the contact of two chemical substances : if there is a reaction they both transform. » Carl Gustav Jung

    I’m in search of magic. Life.

    It appears in the spark of emotion, in the flash of surprise produced by the purity of a first encounter. In its miracle, an encounter can also manifest with places, inanimate objects, works of art, vegetation, animals…and leave behind an unperishable memory.

    My land gave me light, a sometimes brutal sovereign, as well as color, this living being in turmoil.

    I feel the palpitating sap. I feel the flame sizzling within life, then becoming a blaze.

    Before that flame grows, there is a pathway inside the imagination, from the sensorial perception to the abstraction of the vision.

    That small flame comes to life within the sensation then sizzles in the jolt of emotion to follow its path inside of the feeling. It appears in the heart of the matter, in the core of objects and beings themselves, to then elevate in an immaterial spirit where she becomes pure light.

    That process involves a transformation.

    My emotions depend before all else on the sense of the vision, subordinate, itself from the stimulations of color and light.

    While walking I reap encounters. They take place, in a «bath of nature», when I watch exuberant plants which Tropical Islands abound, with their strange shapes, curved, pointed, twisted, and the abundance of their hues and textures.

    I also reap plants’ seeds for their colors and their shapes in order to incorporate them in my work, and that makes me feel the swarming of life.

    During my walks, I also pick up from the ground detritus that are striking to me. However it is within my day to day life that I make the best discoveries like, for instance, with coffee capsules.

    I use them in different ways to see them from different angles. I crush them, scrunch them, cut them, conserve them, smooth them over. I use them as blades, discs, protrusions. I spray them with colors. They remain themselves, as ready-mades or transform.

    The notion of upcycling is subordinate to the notion of encounter just like embedding of vegetal elements. When these two mix, Man erupts in Nature. Nature remains a sublime muse, in a romantic meaning, and which presence we feel throughout an ineffable feeling, a non expressible beauty, a « non so che », that we can perceive in a motion.

    Walking, indeed, plays a double role in the harvest of ideas and materials. Because walking happens through rhythm, the metaphor of emotions. In latin, as a matter of fact, « emotion » comes from e- « outside of » and movere « rhythm ». It is also the reason why I am always mindful to feeling a rhythm in my compositions, whether they are abstract or figuratives. I use figuration to stay true to the emotion and abstraction infuse myself of the sentiment.

    It is while observing and reading Matisse that I became aware of the importance of the latter. My studies at the Beaux-Arts of Florence, Italy and at L’Ecole du Louvre in Paris shaped my vision.

    When I work, I question myself.

    « What is it going to become ? »

    I often close my eyes to dive inside of myself.

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