Rouge Hartley

The Völklingen Ironworks flooded in red light
Copyright: Weltkulturerbe Völklinger Hütte | Oliver Dietze

Rouge Hartley portrait photo Benoit Cary

Rouge Hartley portrait photo Benoit Cary
Copyright: Benoit Cary

Born in 1989 in Trier, Germany
Lives and works in Bordeaux, France


Website: Instagram / Facebook: rouge.hartley



La diversité des tactiques

Series: Hold your own


Copyright: Weltkulturerbe Völklinger Hütte / Karl Heinrich Veith




190 x 145 cm


Oil, canvas


Whether on canvas, as an installation or mural, large format to miniature, in collaborations or participatory projects—Rouge Hartley is open to challenges and experimentation. In everything, however, painting remains the focus. And though lacking a background in street art or graffiti, Hartley has been drawn to urban art. In wall painting in the public sphere and the corresponding, parallel artistic world, she found something that she found absent both during her time at art school and in the conventional contemporary art scene: acceptance and appreciation of traditional figurative painting. The inspiration behind her piece La diversité des tactiques was found near her hometown of Bordeaux, at Arcachon Bay. In Hartley's case, however, the affluent and touristy area seems to have triggered discomfort. The person depicted clings tensely to the brightly colored, inflatable rubber swimming rings, which should actually be associated with feelings of rest and relaxation. Is she in danger of drowning? Perhaps, more metaphorically, from a "kind of geopolitical and late-capitalist fear," as Hartley herself describes it, than from the Atlantic tides? As is typical of the artist's work, the emotions evoked here permit a variety of narrative possibilities.