|"ART 3" show Preface
"It is a formidable test for a painting to be hung on a wall where it will be seen everyday. (The Japanese unroll a work of art for a week and then put it away in a chest). It is a risk that I don't unnecessarily subject my friends to. In my home the walls are bare with the exception of three paintings, of which one by Vaea, dated 1973, has bravely withstood he test of time of being stared at daily. It is a bluish painting where twins, each one in his egg seems waiting to take off for an interstellar trip, or to be delivered ; something like the last image of "2001 : A Space Odyssey".
But since then, Vaea has ceased to wander in a timeless and frozen ether : her odyssey has taken her back to the green paradise of Tahitian love of the ancestral Earth.
Vaea is fire and ice: the cold Slavic metaphysics and the warm Polynesian wildness ; exactly my two contradictory fascinations."
Michel POLAC - Paris, 1976
PREFACE ART 3 show
One can be indulgent towards the works of a ravishing flower woman like Vaea. After meeting her and specially after having seen an important number of her paintings, I shall tell you that Vaea is deeply inspired and that her work is a marvellous synthesis of dream and the beauty of Tahiti.
This young artist does not have to envy Gauguin !
Pierre BOUTEILLER, 1977
A young woman, Vaea paints Tahiti - Decorative Art, multicolour exotism, a surrealistic primitive : a sunshine in the middle of winter.
RADIO FRANCE INTERNATIONAL
(Paris, Fébuary 1977)
A voice, Vaea, born 26 years ago in Tahiti. Vaea who paints what she sees, but what she sees, she is the only one to see it.
The atmosphere of people and things, the confluent of real and imaginary, the shock of thousand rays of pure colour.
Colours which she gathered over there in Moorea and which she clothes her memories and her dreams. Landscapes with a fantastic vegetation dying in the sun, naked bodies whose outlines flow into the sand and the water.
A whole country, climat, song to the sweetness of life, and also to the sweetness of dreaming.
Bird-men, moon bodies, a warmth from over there, o Moorea, but also the drug from here, the one from Paris.
" Her name is Vaea, she is Tahitian, young and beautiful ! Hurry to see her show, it's remarkable !
Paul WERMUS - Paris, 1982
JEAN-LUC CHALUMEAU for ARTS magazine
Vaea comes from Tahiti. But is it really necessary to give this king of detail that irresistibly invites one to compare her paintings to those of the hermit of Atuona ?
Vaea's road took her not from Pont-Aven towards the warm islands, but from the latter, where she was born, towards Paris, where she now lives, because this city remains one or the two or three places of the world where all painters, wherever they come from, are at home. Vaea is at home in Paris, and still more in painting. She has the resources of a gifted technician. Her exhibition proves with superabundance her virtuosity in the "rendu" of a filtering foliage… but certainly, this is not the essential. In spite of the charm that stops the hurried visitor, Vaea removes the masks and the easiness fades. The painter gazes upon a harsh world with a lucid eye, valiant enough to see all because she knows she is saved by the joy of painting.
Jean-Luc CHALUMEAU - Paris, 1982
Paris 15 février 1982Un boxeur dans les Tifaifai.
Vaea painter and Tahitian knew how to escape the Gauguin's syndrome. The result : soft hyperrealism.
LES NOUVELLES LITTERAIRES
" She is from this immemorial country where Victor Segalen established for us the word.
Tahiti is for Vaea a matrix place, an elective space of births and apathetic lives. And through this light that was judged incomparable by Gauguin, above all, Vaea endeavours ton render a certain Polynesian conviviality where indolence, the pearly languor, the inner calm infuses a vaguely anxious felicity.
Gérard SPITFRI, 1982
(Paris febuary 1982)
Vaea held her first show in Tahiti in 1979 at the "Musée Gauguin", where she had an enormous success. Monte Carlo and Düsseldorf had welcomed her before that and, since 1974, she has had a string of exhibits in Paris at Art et Valeur, "Palais des Congrès", "Art 3" ant at the Gallery Jean-Pierre Lavignes.
Much sought after, her works can be found today in collections in Tahiti, Los Angeles, London, Geneva and Milan. There is nothing surprising about this… Firmly attached to reality in her own way, to translate it, Vaea makes her innermost joys and paints transparent through the shadows and lights, animating her subjects and in the movement she is able to give to life itself…
Vaea, who has shown her work since 1974 in Paris, Tahiti and elsewhere, inherited the charm of her mother and an incredible talent for painting the light, the colours and the great travel into the unconscious. In her exhibition she bears witness of what was her daily life before leaving Tahiti…
Vaea has a decidedly different experience of life than ours, but when she paints, even though she makes us think of Gauguin, her paintings are so totally contemporary and social, that she manages to break down any barrier that stands between her and the viewer.
Text from ROGER VADIM published in 1985
"When one speaks of painting, Tahiti is synonymous with Gauguin. It would be a paradox if the public and critics who never recognized the talent of the exiled Breton during his lifetime failed to recognize - in the name of the dead genius - painters that, today should mark our times.
Vaea is perhaps not the only painter born in "The Windward Islands" who has the merit of escaping the shadow of the giant, but is this one who impressed me the most. I should say "she" since Vaea is a woman.
In spite of her youth, her work spans a period of more than ten years. Her talent is unusual, dreamlike, exotic, unparalleled. She has crated an universe where each encounter is a surprise: children with adult eyes, women charmingly shaped and earthy, dancing dream and sin in a ballet, sometimes disturbing, where gracefulness is an ever present host. Throughout her work runs an obsession of the cradle and bed where phantasms mix and sometimes the masked lover, woman brown and blue, the austere blond, the young girl draped in eternity.
Her poetic inspiration that is poised between soul and flesh is an open window to the future, death and joy. The apocalyptical bird is white.
With Vaea everything is lascivious. Her characters are waiting for love. The child clinging to his mother's breast is laden with erotic innocence. Yet, in a subtle way, her observations are also feminist.
Vaea breaks free from the stereotypes of folklore, charm and sensuality to engage the anguish of women in a context far exceeding that of the gracious vahine, smiling and languorous under the coconut trees.
Tidal wave of the improbable - surely not of the impossible - the sea rushing in upon the slumbering woman, the lagoon adorned with blue and greens not found commercially, nor in others oceans, sliding under a pillow.
One of the paintings of Vaea seemed very personal to me. It is a woman under a sheet, her face partly uncovered. One comprehends by the elegant fold of the protective sheet that this is not a cocoon, nor a womb, but rather a suit of armour covered with esoteric furrows difficult to decode. The woman is asleep ; she is waiting to be understood and the sheet to be torn away. She seems to think no one will have the courage to do so.
Vaea is beautiful. Her long legs, slender waist, captivating blue-green eyes, her androgynous bust, are proof that beauty blends itself with talent, courage and intelligence.
I dream of a day when I will own a large house. And in this house a wall. And on this wall the painting of a famous artist. And my friends, impressed, will say to me :
"Is it a VAEA ?"
Roger VADIM - Tahiti, 1985
PREFACE EXPOSITION - L'ERMITAGE
Her talent is extraordinary beyond doubt, a gift of God or Nature.
Sir Robert BOLT - Tahiti, 1988