Maxime Déria is a contemporary French artist, who uses a Ballpoint pen to draw the most incredible fantasy drawings. Monsters and dragon like figures in bright colors, intricate detailed artworks, that let your imagination fly. Enjoy!
My name is Maxime Déria. I was born in 1991, in Brittany in France. I spent my first years there, till 2003, with my parents and my sister.
We lived in a small housing estate, a peaceful place called: Plestan.
A place where you rubbed shoulders with many other primary school students who also lived there. There were many groups of friends, each group built a hut so that we had a place and space for ourselves.
In my childhood, I found inspiration in the graffiti I saw looking out of the car window when we drove somewhere. Graffiti was my first approach to the artistic field because it was the simplest.
I saw them initially on the roads and in magazines and then later when the internet was better, I explored online, in magazines, also in PS2 games.
Then with time, I moved on, but at that given time Basquiat and other great graffiti artists like: SEEN. Shepard Fairey, Futura2000, T-Kid, and jonOne were huge influences for me.
School days were not easy for me. I went through many difficulties during my school. days. After School, I went on to study Heavy Duty Agricultural Mechanics.
I always kept on drawing, mainly as an escape. It also allowed me to continue working on my art practice. I never was able to attend art school, it wasn't an option at the time due to various reasons.
I carried out 2 years of illustration studies. Making drawings for young people on the internet. The idea was to illustrate and write stories for children's books.
It allowed me to spend a few days in Paris to participate in an internship that came in addition to online courses.
On this rare visit to Paris, I was able to visit the Louvre.
In the end, I quit. I was having trouble getting homework done on time, then pressuring and forcing myself to do it. It just wasn't right for me, so I decided to stop. There was no reason for me to stay.
In 2013 I moved into my apartment this was an important moment for me. Over the years it has given me a space to do a lot of research.
I took the time to test making a graphic novel. I had written the story and started to make several illustrations, research sketches - alas unsuccessfully.
I still have some of the research material, but there isn't much left. Maybe I will come back to it someday, as is a lot of it ended up in the trash. I haven't even posted any of it on Instagram.
2019, was an important year, I made a 2m long drawing with a ballpoint pen. It wasn't the most successful achievement, nor necessarily the most beautiful, but it allowed me to achieve more confidence in using a ballpoint pen to draw.
It enabled me to also draw without having to start with research sketches or working only with a pencil on paper.
This was the most important 2 months of work. This brought me my first exhibition in a Parisian gallery in October 2019.
I presented the 2m drawing in the gallery. It was rather big, maybe too big. It was made up of 6 drawings in A4 (21x29.7 cm) in black and white drawn with a Bic ballpoint pen.
In February 2020 I decided to take my artistic work more seriously. The two lockdowns in France gave me more time to be able to fully devote myself to it.
Although there is still work to be done, the time offered by these lockdowns has really been beneficial.
I took advantage of this opportunity to also explore Instagram and Facebook, there I discovered a lot. I like spending time reading interviews from young artists that I follow.
There is also the SODA festival: A German social distancing art festival available on their website. Here you can find several works related to the current pandemic situation.
I have since taken the virus as a source of inspiration by illustrating it through different monsters on monochromatic backgrounds.
Monsters because they allow me to be able to illustrate without constraint, mixing them with mythology, on painted backgrounds.
Bringing color and giving a balance between the dark side of the illustrations and the bright side of the monochrome background, bringing light and illumination to its grayness.
I would like to add to the work on paper that I have done so far, also works on canvas. The canvas works will be different from the precise pen on paper, the work on canvas will be done with a brush.
Autodidact - no art school
2007 - CAP Agricultural mechanics
2009 - BAC PRO Heavy-duty mechanics
2012 - CAP Automotive Painter
2015 - PARIS Youth Illustrator drawing study
2019 - Group exhibition in Paris, at the gallery : Libre est l'art Paris, France.
Merci beaucoup to the wonderful and talented artist Maxime Deria for sharing with us his work and his story.