Mathieu PIFFETEAU, born in 1982, lives and works in Biarritz.


Pixelization and light work

Mathieu PIFFETEAU diffuses light into the geometric shapes of his abstract canvases. With no flat areas, the artist uses a gradation of colors from which he applies small squares of paint one by one. Thanks to an optical effect, the eye perceives light instead of the pixelated gradation of colors. Kinetic energy then appears all over the canvas, which seems to be traversed by an autonomous movement.


The optical illusions

The squares are applied to lines corresponding to precise shades, depending on the desired lighting effect. He uses oil paint in a slow, precise process of fragmentations, a time-consuming technique that allows for a fluidity of expression. Despite the apparent perfection of this luminous continuity, none of the small squares is identical. It’s the crushing of the paint as it passes from one line to the next that gives the eye the impression of continuity, as it doesn’t perceive the breaks.

This process requires days or even months of work before the light is diffused on the canvas.

This technique is to some extent inspired by the Australian Aboriginal community, with whom he painted traditional pictures according to strict codes, assimilating patience as much as the proximity of art and craft.

The artist concentrates his efforts on the illusion of blurred lines, the creation of complex shapes and the accentuation of movement.


In winter 2023, for his first solo exhibition, the artist took over the Sainte-Eugénie crypt in Biarritz with over fifty canvases of varying dimensions.

The Arteko gallery in San Sebastian (Spain) invited Mathieu PIFFETEAU to exhibit his work in parallel with that of Alfredo Alcain, winner of the national plastic arts prize.

Without message or symbolism, the hypnotic works of Mathieu PIFFETEAU’s canvases aim at the contemplation of beauty through the power of color and optical effects.