V&A Print Season: Lucille Clerc


Q: What made you choose these particular sections of the V&A for your print? How did you decide on the colour scheme?

LC: My Portrait of the V&A is based on some of my favourite sections, the porch, the sculptures and ceramics department and William Morris rooms. I have then transposed these elements in my own colour scheme but keeping some elements realistic so that they stay recognisable.
I’m currently preparing a new one focusing on the Asian collections and fabric patterns ( both inspired by the Indian section and William Morris patterns)

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Q: Did you notice anything odd or surprising/learn anything new while studying the V&A buildings?
LC: I’ve been going for years and each time I discover something new, both about the buildings and the collections. I have a soft spot for the less spectacular parts of the building that I often discover when loosing my way, such as the patterns on the walls and floors of the first floor. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to say I’ve seen it all, and that’s what I love about it.

Q: What draws you to architectural subjects?
LC: The city of London has become one of my main source of inspiration. I see it like a giant puzzle with infinite combinations and stories to tell.

Q: In the wake of the attack on Charlie Hebdo, we saw the powerful message a very simple illustration can have, what message do you hope people take from your body of work?
LC: There are several parts in my work, when I work for the press, my images tend to be more synthetic, the aim is to find the most efficient way to convey one strong idea. When I work on books or prints, the time scale is different, the viewer has more time to stare and discover all the details I like to hide in my images. I have time to tell a story.


Q: Did you ever visit the V&A while studying at Central Saint Martins and imagine one day being commissioned by them?
LC: I think my first visit at the V&A was when I was 5 and every year until I finally moved to London and could become a member. (My celebration lunch for my MA was in the Morris, Gamble and Poynter Rooms with my family). So it’s been a long love story with a happy end I could never have imagined, and hopefully there are still a few happy chapters to be written!

Portrait of the V&A by Lucille Clerc
Limited edition of 40, signed and titled by the artist
6 layer screenprint. £195