Pacale Marthine Tayou is a Cameroonian artist based in Belgium. His work has appeared in documenta11 (2002) in Kassel, two Venice Biennales (2005 and 2009), and numerous international exhibitions. Recent solo exhibitions took place at the Serpentine Galleries, London, and Fowler Museum, Los Angeles, both in 2015.
Looking at a painting that Lucy Winton had made a few years ago—a strange and colorful assemblage of floating animals that jut, as bas-reliefs, from the board on which they are painted—I asked her about the odd drip coming from the head of a cow floating in the left-hand quadrant.
In Speak, Memory, Vladimir Nabokov describes meeting an old general as a child who, to amuse him, laid out matchsticks on a sofa, placing them end to end, saying, “This is the sea in calm weather,” then changing them to a zigzag and saying, “This is a stormy sea.”