(00 33) 2 98 39 62 25
Contact Fax (by appointment) :
(00 33) 9 50 04 32 70
Headquarters : 5 Hent Meneyer, 29 950 Gouesnac'h, France.
Postal address : 2 impasse de Kervégant, 29 350 Moëlan sur mer, France.

Port of Doëlan in southern Finistère


Painter Pierre Lorthioir, who died in 2011, was originally from the North of France but made southern Brittany his adopted home in 1987. The reputation that he built up through word of mouth over his lifetime, lives on. Art lovers from all four corners of France come to admire his canvases in Breton galleries, where he exhibited through the course of his career. From 2005 his studio, ‘Atelier du Prajou’ in Gouesnac’h in Finistère, was open to visitors. In 2014, he was honoured at the ‘Promenade sous les toiles’ show hosted by the Salon de Peinture in Fouesnant-les-Glénan; four of his works – one portrait and three abstract pieces – were exhibited alongside painting competition entries. During the same period, the Atelier du Prajou held a dedicated exhibition of his work.

As energetic as it is reflective and experienced, the work of Pierre Lorthioir is the product of an approach committed to research and pushing deeper. He composed both abstract and figurative pieces, using acrylic on canvas or on paper, pastels, collage, pencil and even watercolour. His portraits and landscapes could be described as expressionist, the generous marks conveying the emotion of the subject.

Pierre Lorthioir began painting from a young age in Saint-Amand-les-Eaux, in the Nord department in northeast France. He drew mines and slag-heaps, places marked by hard lines, which suited his characteristically strong brushstrokes. But the landscapes of Brittany, which he spent a great deal of his career depicting, are no less impactful once they take shape on his canvases. Scenes that may seem so commonplace as to be banal, such as fields and woodland, harbours and beaches, assume a powerful presence in Lorthioir’s paintings and, rather than originality at all cost, he seeks honesty in his work.

The truth that emanates from his paintings brings forth a depth of feeling in the viewer. This emotion is conveyed by bold exuberant brushstrokes, which give intensity to a wild landscape, lend an air of majesty to boats in a harbour scene, or depict the expressiveness of the human form, the flat but nuanced colours he has applied bringing the subject to life.

Lorthioir’s paintings reflect the special atmosphere of the places he chose, selected because they moved him. When representing a landscape he would literally immerse himself in it for hours, to experience and understand it in order to paint it. He knew how to capture the subtle variations of nature at different times and according to the season. He understood how to handle light, from the blinding white of a blank page to the sublime light quality of a stormy sky. He also understood the power of colour – the thousands of hues of the Atlantic, from the most intense blue to the most troubled grey; or for vegetation, using paler shades of green and yellow to represent a verdant woodland or dry coastal plants battered by the salty air. Never timid, Lorthioir’s colours remind us of the intensity of scenes we can sometimes overlook: a landscape that is perhaps very familiar like a beach, or not thought of as attractive such as a boatyard.

The honesty of a painting corresponds to the honesty of the painter. Pierre Lorthioir’s representation of common subjects allows a raw reality to manifest itself, which is impressive and always expressive.

Shérine Taia.





EXHIBITION AT THE ‘ATELIER DU PRAJOU’

5 Hent Meneyer
29 950 Gouesnac’h

Tel: (00 33) 02 98 51 11 98

Free entry by appointment.