Jean Marie Poumeyrol was born in 1946 and studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bordeaux; upon graduation he already had a four year old son to support, and he began his career teaching of mechanical drafting. This occupation was mercifully cut short when he was “released” from the educational system.
Art teachers at the time had to pass tests to determine if they were skilled enough to teach drawing, and he failed his exam -being given an ‘F’ for nude drawing.
Encouraged by this failure he dedicated himself to painting and drawing
full time, eventually creating a large body of erotica which have
marked him as one of France’s
greatest artists in this domain.
In his early works, Jean-Marie Poumeyrol was quickly recognized as a master of erotica, combining hallucinogenic and macabre imagery in an unparalleled manner. But as he matured he began to display a marked fascination in the enclosed spaces of sewers, industrial waste and disposal plants. Despite the lucrative gains to be made from erotic art, the painter
gradually moved beyond the female form, finding a greater fascination in
the interior spaces devoid of nudes.
“As long as I can remember” Poumeyrol writes, “I have been faithfully accompanied by boredom. These sad and useless moments, like a pleasant emptiness, have invented those strange chimeras which continually wander into my visual memory. With time, this uncommon state between memory and imagination has matured into a kind of contemplation, and I have become a great connoisseur of solitude, prefering that boredom which accompanies all my wanderings into a world delicious, extravagant and vain.”
“Over time…the women in my erotic works became more discreet and eventually disappeared, leaving only the faintest traces of their presence. Those interiors, no longer occupied by living beings, offered me in their stead a mysterious emptiness which invited all possibilities… From this moment on, I became fascinated by a series of rooms guarding their secrets. This metamorphosis in my work allowed me to explore man’s most primitive fears and anxieties: distress, obsession, solitude, darkness, enclosure, the passage of time, abandonment and death.”
From a series of ‘chamber works’ such as these, Poumeyrol moved on to painting enclosures where any sign of humanity had long since left.
At present, Jean Marie Poumeyrol lives in Pau in the Pyrenees.