Sylvette David/Lydia Corbett | A Retrospective
When Sylvette and her brother were children, they lived on the île du Levant, a small island off the coast of the French Riviera. On the Levant, they could be wanderers, explorers, they went out in canoes and boats, they swam and fished. They played in the rocks and the garrigue. They were young fauves. The children’s perceptual world of familiarity became orientated towards indefinite horizons.
Sylvette particularly liked the beach of Rioufrède, with its white and pinkish pebbles. It was a beach she accessed by descending a steep path through pine trees, she has spoken of its clear azure water, and sharp light and beauty. She remembers the marine fauna and loved the lizards on the rocks. Her childhood should have been a place of total peace and freedom, but she grew up through the privations of war. Her loving mother, Honor Gell, did her best to protect her children in Heliopolis, the only village on the island. The family remained on the island, and left just before November 1942, when German troops, with their Italian allies occupied Vichy’s formerly “free zone.”….More info at https://penwithgallery.com/exhibition/sylvette-david-lydia-corbett-2024/