Chloé Poizat’s whole body of work deals with disappearance (of beings, things and places), invisible worlds and metamorphosis.
She has always had a specific bond with fiction, whether with literature or with genre movie. Her artistic roots mainly come from everything which concerns spontaneous creative practices, such as outsider art, automatic and spiritualist drawing, folk art, primitive art, ritual songs and dances.
Her work is based on assembling, with no limitation of medium, setting a dialogue among fragments (drawings, paintings, sculptures, photographs, sounds), creating, in this way, fictionnal and fragmented worlds in which the grotesque, the dream, the fear and the uncanny are everywhere. A part of her work also takes shape through edition, with Artzines, books or multiples.
« Inspired by an iconography that runs from the 19th century to the 60’s, Chloé Poizat adopts topics from an alternative « subculture » which rejects the mainstream, a disturbing and subversive world that challenges our intellectual comfort by drawing in the collective unconscious a feeling of deja-vu, in which nothing seems familiar nor strange anymore: levitating characters, disembodiment (Fictions, Formules Secrètes), spiritism (Spirites, Dessin Fantôme, La Table Dicte), fantastic bestiary that may remind us Hieronymus Bosch’s imagery (Napperon, Paysages Accidentés, Paysages Portatifs), the artist enjoys describing inexplicable phenomena, underworlds, the illusion that the image she presents us already exists even though it does not. Chloé Poizat’s drawings, in which references to high culture mingle with references to popular and underground culture, prevent any direct approach by a clever scrambling of temporalities and of visual codes. These ironic deviations and a strong taste for staging could induce the idea of a postmodern cabinet of curiosities, an abundant memorabilia with collages inspired by surrealism (Vacance Anthropique, La poursuite du lointain). So Chloé Poizat’s drawings are not meant to be looked at but to be felt, the viewer being divided by the dualism of a contemporary thinking that simultaneously pays tribute to Modernity and adopts the magnetism of primitive forces.
Chloé Poizat belongs to this generation of artists who, from the 90’s, went back to drawing by exploring the unlimited possibilities of narration. This medium, even if it was not discredited as painting was, remained far from the aesthetic questions with which art critics of the 60’s dealt, during the rise of the conceptual and poststructuralist movements. This lack of theorization allowed artists to experiment the high narrative capacity of drawing, its borrowings from popular imagery, from the vernacular and literature, creating a poetic world to discover, in which the irrational and the bizarre mingle with an urging desire to express repressed emotions and with a quest for authenticity. Then possibilities become unlimited: directly linked with thinking, drawing is as simple and essential in the means it uses as it is complex and polysemic in its purpose. Opening up the medium by putting it on a wall, conceptualizing real graphic installations in which the layout of the works is as crucial as the drawing itself, Chloé Poizat stages her art, she makes it dramatic and poetic, by making hers the exhibition space, which became a wide field of plastic inquiries. Questioning the materiality of the work, its purpose, the artist’s approach surely falls within contemporary aesthetics, by taking part in a new definition of drawing and of its monstration, composing drawn world inevitably meant to disappear or renewing amateur cabinets by scenographic accumulation. Drawing or graphein - from ancient Greek to write, then etymologically linked to drawn image, from where emerge sometimes images, sometimes texts - is a universal act, perhaps timeless: it evokes, it suggests, it echoes images buried in our collective unconscious, whether they are familiar or seemingly forgotten, and still it is original and irreplaceable. No drawing appears ex nihilo, and if Chloé Poizat’s research take part in a aesthetic movement of appropriation or of archivism, one might rather think of the idea of a poetic rewriting, perhaps even automatic, when her topics are dictated to her by these archaic spirits that everyone carries inside. »
Anne-Cécile Guitard, "Ces esprits qui nous gouvernent".