Por: Arley Camillo

One day, we lay our best dreams in words; from these words, we’ll make our attempts at the concrete and in these we must clearly define our fate: indestructible trails, markings, and footprints of our existence.

The artist, an almost supernatural being, knows that life is by itself not enough for anyone and therefore created, procreates, and recreates their perpetual models, leaving here and there, always available, their samples that the viewer has the heavy burden and blessing of reviving when and as much as they can and want.

Oh, the artists – what would mankind be without these unique, unmistakable beings who offer us bountiful balms of comfort to soften our pain, doubt, and loss – all those stones set in our paths of little privilege other than that of art for art, but only of those artists that can see the soul.

I always justify my words, like these new ones here and now, when I visit ELIAS LAYON’s studio and end up visiting the essential part of his being and the implications of his sensitivity – his passions always LAY ON DEEP! In my situation, as a faithful friend for years, of his tender and fraternal affection for me.

But for that I have only to watch his soft, discreetly melancholic countenance, a certain restlessness with illusions and delusions, with those and many others with which his Tuareg ancestors live in their enigmatic desert. The world LAYON subtly shows us through his art, including the art using few words or almost complete silence and intense eloquence.

The other day, in December 2016, I left his studio after a brief and succinct exchange, in which I let myself be taken aback without reserve by the big Saint Peter statue still in resisting the action of the sharp and determined chisel, in vibrant struggle with the wood, still exhaling the soft resin of life from the cedar block removed from nature to soon become a Saint Peter that, when finished, will certainly seem to us to have been brought back to life by a real need.

Maybe LAYON will bring us in 2017 from that brave cedar block, in redemption, a Saint Peter preaching; bringing new beliefs to answer the angst of human life today, never before so tarnished as in this third millennium that started a little over fifteen years ago. Maybe LAYON will award us with an innovative, perhaps overjoyed, Saint Peter.