works / tarot de sete - major arcanas

loading… Tarot de Sète, painting series by Julien Labat
The World

Series of 22 Paintings
Acrylics on paper


Sète is a coastal town situated halfway between Marseille and the Pyrénées mountains in the South of France. It also happens to be the town where I spent most of my life in.

It has a very unique, rich, and vivid culture that slowly developed over time with influenced by several waves of immigration, mainly from Italy, Spain, and the Maghreb countries.

I wanted to paint portraits of the town and its people while, at the same time, reflecting on the concept of culture. The Tarot de Marseille was then the perfect cultural object to build upon.

loading… Tarot de Sète, first drafts by Julien Labat
First drafts


loading… Tarot de Sète, research steps by Julien Labat
Research steps

It is a very powerful piece of popular culture that has also been reinterpreted many times by great artists, including Breton and the Surrealists, Niki de Saint Phalle, Alejandro Jodorowski, and others.

Because it is an exhaustive list of archetypes representing human nature, it both "contains all culture" and invites us to identify the specificites of our own.

loading… Tarot de Sète, L'Amoureux by Julien Labat
The Lovers

"Le Tarot de Sète" is a song of love for a town, but more broadly for Western Mediterranean people and culture.

The painting process and technique are designed to mimic traditional woodcut and later silk screen printing methods, resulting in a deliberate blend of mechanical precision and human imprecision, putting systematic constrains over the work.

I wanted to strip away the physical aspect of painting to establish another kind of relationship with the viewer. A playful one, that talks to the mind and the unconscious, striving to go deeper into human soul.

loading… Tarot de Sète, Paintings exhibition by Julien Labat
Painting like a machine


loading… Tarot de Sète, Paintings exhibition by Julien Labat
The exhibition
loading… Tarot de Sète, Paintings exhibition by Julien Labat
loading… Tarot de Sète, Le Soleil - painting by Julien Labat
The Sun

Prints are coming back soon. For any question : contact me