by Alain Chivilò
This year, 2023, for the Grand Slam tournament on Roland Garros on red clay, the French Tennis Federation has invited the artist Maxime Verdier. A tradition that since 1980 has reached its 44th image and edition.
A figurative and dreamlike poster entitled Terre d’étoiles (Land of stars), entirely drawn in colored pencil, pays homage to the new Court Philippe-Chatrier stadium, allowing you to create personal emotions.
As statement by Verdier: “when I was asked to create this poster, a memory came back to me. I had a friend at school who played a lot of tennis and often watched Roland-Garros. I didn’t play tennis, but he shared his passion with me. It was at that point that I started to take an interest, to discover Nadal and Federer. What was wonderful was the starry-eyed look he had when he talked about those players. That was my first inspiration. When I visited the stadium, I also became fully aware of the passion that people who watch tennis have. It’s lovely to see. It seems to me that there aren’t many sport lovers out there as enthusiastic as tennis fans. When I did this poster, I was mainly thinking about children in tennis clubs, and encouraging them to want to go further in their sport”.
Maxime Verdier, a French artist born in Dieppe in 1991, spent his entire childhood in Normandy. After obtaining a literary baccalauréat, he enrolled at the Le Havre-Rouen School of Art and Design, from which he graduated in 2015, and then at the National School of Fine Arts in Paris. He graduated from the latter with first class honours in 2017. After rising to prominence at the 64th Salon de Montrouge in 2019, Verdier has since participated in numerous group exhibitions in France. In 2021, he became a resident artist at the Drawing Factory in Paris. He lives in Paris and works in a community studio in Gennevilliers. His work is the embodiment of, via sculptures and drawings, a range of childhood memories, emotions, and events that are both significant and anecdotal. His creations are brimming with nuance, between the marvellous and the bizarre, like the most magical and fantastic stories.
Roland Garros 2023 – The official poster by Maxime Verdier artist
©AC, NDSL, AM, Alain Chivilo