Stéphane Halleux, born in Belgium in 1972.
He studied at the College of Arts “Saint-Luke Academy” in Liège.
After his studies, he began his career as a colour advisor and scale model designer in the animation industry.
Stéphane Halleux uses humour in his work. As an artist, he claims the right to laugh, and therefore he sculpts and denounces the absurdity of life in a cynical way. Through the precision of their construction, his works deliver the illusionary lightness of the artist’s childlike universe, while incorporating that subtle hint of irony where the viewer can project their own imagination upon it and become entangled in the sculptural proposition. His works combine bronze, copper, wood and leather, a diverse collection of parts, all of which will be incorporated into the installation technique. Methodically, he collects photographs and rigorously arranges the fragments that make up his works. As a sincere visual artist, he is moved by being in touch with the materials he chooses to work with, deploying uncommon creativity and multiple skills that revive the heritage of the artisan artist. As a timeless artist, Stéphane Halleux does not submit to any particular school. His work questions society according to its own rules, where superheroes from American comic books cohabit with the world of cinema and animation. Whether one finds influences of Jules Verne, Tim Burton or Marcel Duchamp, the artist thinks outside of the realm of imagination. His deceptively naïve dreamlike style creates, with humour, a coherent and powerful body of work where technical rigour and precision are concealed beneath the features of an explorer ready to conquer a retro-futuristic world. In this anachronistic work, Stéphane Halleux’s idea is simple: the future is the fantasy of our past, projected into a new technological space. His visual research articulates these two temporalities. The future turns immediately old-fashioned, outdated, reflexive and narrative. Halleux works with inanimate objects, giving them a life of their own through the sculpture. “When I make a character, a flying civil servant, an accountant, I imagine his life, his surroundings, his living quarters, his journey of getting to work, etc. And so independently of the artistic and technical quest, I can't help but make each new piece coexist as a next-door neighbour of the previous one.” He strives to recreate human feelings, featuring neurotic characters with whom the viewer can identify. It is not surprising that in 2014, Stéphane’s work, captured in “Mr. Hublot” won the Oscar for “Best Animated Short Film”. It was already clear then that the sculptures demonstrate all the qualities of animation. So for the first time, a Luxembourg production was awarded the unique Oscar In Los Angeles. Tim Johnson, Animation Director of Dreamworks, was not mistaken when he recognised the successful integration of movement and narratives into the articulated assemblages, as already in 2011, he saw Stéphane as a “story-teller” sculptor, whose sculptures seem to pop out of an animated film. 2015 happened to be a prolific year for the artist as he enjoyed a solo exposition at the Eiffel Tower in March throughout the summer. In Egmont Palace, Brussels, he was one of the representatives of Seven Young Belgian artists, where his work could be seen next to Wim Delvoye, Johan Muyle and Kris Martin, etc. After several years with multiple international exhibitions such as in Paris and Miami, the year 2022 also put the artist in the spotlight as Stéphane was honoured to show his work in the Atomium, a magnificent steel construction in Brussels, specially built for the 1958 World Fair. Today, a second film, this time a full-length motion picture with Stéphane Halleux’s universe, is in the making with the animation studio “La Fabrique d’images” in Luxembourg and in a joint venture with Belgium and France. The movie “The Defects”, with Stéphane Halleux as artistic director, is based on the original idea of Christine Parisse and Jean-Marie Musique. With an estimated budget of 10 million euro, the script is guaranteed by David Freedman and Jules de Jongh. This multifaceted artist definitely claims humour with a capital H, doesn’t take himself too seriously, and plays with the imperative need to intellectualise his work in order to stay tuned with all creative impulses.
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