Artist Interview: Carole Jury, on her art practice and why she loves Daler Rowney materials

by Cass Art

Carole Jury, French born artist who now lives and works in Princeton is both a photographer and abstract painter. She combines the two mediums to create her dynamic works, using texture to pull through paint to reveal subtle tones and colours underneath and against one another. We caught up with Carole to learn more about her art making process, what she loves about using oil and acrylic paint - and why Daler-Rowney Georgian Oil is her go to material!

Thanks for taking the time to chat! Firstly, could you introduce yourself and how you began your creative journey?

Of course! Thank you for having me . My name is Carole Jury, I am an artist - working with paint as well as photography and design. When I arrived in the United States from Europe six years ago, nothing I imagined at the time was even close to me becoming of a professional artist. 

However, this new life style encouraged my desire and my freedom to paint. In High School and university, I studied arts by optional courses, even if my career in France was oriented towards human resources and communications. During more than fifteen years, I kept art as hobby and for my private circle. It's this family expatriation that gave me wings to rebuild something new...Thus, I built my artist path overtime, it’s what I am today: a French born artist - an abstract painter based in Princeton, NJ. I am completely engaged everyday in my art. I was also always passionate about photography and painting. When I started to put up my art, I wanted to join these two mediums to serve my artistic approach. It’s what I did! All my Series are inspired by a photography and the story always started always with the same process.

Could you talk a bit about your creative process, and the journey you take from initial photographic work and developing this in your painting?

Photography is the main source of my artistic inspiration. The visuals that I take best represent and are at the heart of each of my paintings. They are the foundations of my series and I use them for support whenever I get lost in my work. These photographs may or may not be recent. Sometimes I go through my albums looking for a shot that I would have lost. They are, most frequently, part of those already destined to become a painting at their birth.

I have been building these albums for at least twenty years, depending on walks, trips, situations or emotions. They are always there in memory and flourish when they are exposed. When I do choose to use them for specific Series and paintings, it is like rekindling lost feelings and emotions.

Photography was my first passion. From the film camera to digitizing images, I kept playing with the lights, the fades and the depths. It’s a self-taught game, of course, that has been refined over the years. I love this instrument which manages to reproduce, to transcribe, to memorize what my eye wants to continue to love.

Being inspired by a photograph does not mean "reproducing it" or "painting it." It’s an inspiring medium for which I will join my interpretation through painting. Interpretation gives itself great freedom, as if it were facing the image without ever developing a tangible and exact reproduction. The imagination operates an almost natural detachment and attaches itself to the exploitation of seeing two aspects of inspiring photography. This can translate into the work of movement, the field of colors, the textures… It is through this work of transcription that my series are born. As a result, within a series, several very different canvases emerge. 

Then, the works will stand out, it gives themselves fragility to obtain singularity. Put side by side, these singularities form a series. I like to scrutinize the inspiring photograph so that it transports me to the point where it becomes almost intoxicating, that it is sometimes impossible for me to work on another series at the same time. It is as if it penetrated into my tools, into my oils. The image becomes a story that I tell with my fingers, the material, the colours. A writer would take his pen to annotate, tell his emotion, here I take my tools and my tubes.

 We’ve got to talk about texture! What is it about the nature of oil and acrylic that allows you to capture each of your individual marks?

Building and thinking about a texture is like imagining in 3D what you are trying to shape. I am sure that this artistic process is common with sculptors, for example, when establishing this connection before launching their hands into their work.

Very often, I tried to force myself to work only with smoothed surfaces to experiment with new paths and new designs. But, very quickly the textures and the desire to bring out these bits of matter outside of my painting returned. Finally, my hands dictated by my mind, try to grab the slightest "bead" that paint on the canvas produced, the slightest "accident" that the knives or spatulas drew. To give substance to an idea, to give it thickness, to make it real by finally creating an object, it’s like giving birth, an existence in its own right. This frenzy of building textures gives my works a reason to be. Oil paint is the paint I selected because it has all the specificity I looked for. Brightness, flexibility, smoothness...are incorporate in the same product. I like the shades of colour and the mixing between it is very easy and pleasant. I can sculpt it…

The way you use your marks to introduce colours within your palette is wonderful – the pull of a blue to reveal a warm red underneath, a stark white streaked with purple. How do you approach your colour selections in a work?

When starting a new series inspired mainly by a certain photograph, or even anything else, I try to experiment with the many colours and shades visible to the naked eye. I will then find new colours within those when different mediums are added… finding new shades of these colours to add depth… This is a very personal process, to each artist’s it’s own, and it goes farther than just what the eye can see. 

In a way, it all comes down to my mind and my artistic eye, telling me and helping me find the right pairings and colours. Trying to explain it and not being able to really just goes to show how much deeper than just colours this is. It's all part of my subconscious mind guiding me and a lot of experimentation. 

I need to work with the colours and learn more about how they interact and help each other stand out. It's a long process, finding the right balance and also being able to make each of the colours the “star of the show”, in a way. 

What is it about Daler-Rowney materials that you love?

As all artists do, I tested many kind of paints in acrylic and oil from different brands. The Georgian Oil by Daler-Rowney is the paint which gives me the best answer to my artistic expectations. It is the one that really gives life and meaning to my movement and my art. No other that I’ve tried has ever given me the same depth and the same ability to express myself as well as the Georgian oil.

The first quality is the texture who is not so liquid and not so solid. The second is the nature of the pigments who are very powerful and the third is the quality on time. 

And if I went delving into your studio, what other materials am I likely to find?

As you may know, I love the simple and elegant finish of oil but I also love playing with other textures and introducing them within my pieces. I have tried working with many different textiles and textures and have now become familiar with quite a few. 

Some of my favourites being the simplest ones, found in the most evident places. My palette of Goldfinger is completely beautiful when I bring a metallic touch on my painting. It gives a new and deeper meaning to the oil itself. I’ve also included a lot of textiles in my paintings, kneading the fabrics with the paint and blending it with the other textures. It is like creating a relationship between the two mediums. A forever lasting love story that gives life to the painting and the colour.

In one of my more recent pieces, I have also decided to try using old paint tubes and found a way to incorporate them in the art. I started this project with means to be able to reuse and give a second life to the paint tubes, that would otherwise go to waste. In some cases or in some Series, if I want to reinforce the brightness by using a varnish. This can give the colours more reflection and can add more room for the lights to play with my art. It can even give shade more room to thicken my paintings and let it breathe too. 

Thanks for everything! One final question, when we’re all able to get out and about again – what’s next on the horizon?

Many events are postponed or cancelled during the coronavirus epidemic and it has been difficult to plan an exhibition since the beginning of the confinement. On September, 11-14, my work will be exhibited at Sm’Art Fair in Aix-en-Provence, France by Trevisan International Art, an art curator represented by Paola Trevisan based in Italy. 

During this pandemic period, I took advantage of this time to prepare my next exhibition called “itinerancy#3” by “Women Artists from France to USA”. I founded this group of artists one year ago and we have already exhibited in Paris, France, New Hope (PA) and NYC. Three talented French women artists - Gaeëlle Hintzy-Marcel (sculptor), Marine Futin (drawer), Rachel B (photographer-mix media) are part of this group. Working with them on the scenography is very interesting and always a great challenge because our art is different with very complementary. Each of us brings their own singularity what enriches us. We scheduled our next exhibition in October in Chelsea (NYC) and we hope that it can be realized. Fingers crossed!

I am also organizing a “Solo Show” in Lyon (France) in December. Lyon is my hometown and people are impatient to be able to visit my art and on my side I am very enthusiastic to show my work in person to people who have supported me since the beginning.

Feeling Inspired?


See more of Carole's work 

Shop online for everything you'll need. Don't forget to hashtag #cassart on social media to show us your creations.

Back to blog