1/17

Portraits

I have been making portraits since 1992. Initially the persons photographed agreed to look straight into the camera during a quick session that did not allow for posing. Their faces emerged from a space of darkness with a cinematographic-like tension where the fragile balancing act between appearance and disappearance could be upset at any moment. Suspended between revelation and dissolution, they expressed a series of possibilities ranging from being to non-being. More recently, I have captured the figures of subjects without formality but with greater photographic precision.  

 

Over the course of developing these large portraits in the darkroom, my relationship to the fluid body of the photograph became clearer. The images of faces appeared as condensed photographic matter, a collection of dots set on paper and reminiscent of their equivalent: that of atoms moving in space and forming a continuum. The portrait, an aggregate of particles, does not materialize as a smooth continuous surface; the holes, the spaces of the photographic grain fluctuate with the scale of projection and attest to the random nature of representation. Nothing is definitive in the image with the fluid grain expanding or contracting.

 

Several landscape series, including The Instant Before Death, also unfold like portraits of subjects suspended between emergence and erasure. The image veering to black also indicates here an extreme condensation of photographic matter, impervious to projected light. But the latent image of a horizon, of a mountain, can always surge in the photograph and become visible again as the series oscillates in rythmic moments.

> François C. Silver print, 101 cm x 76 cm. [1]

Richard G. (diptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm. [2]

Richard G. (detail) [3]

Anne C. (triptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm. [4]

Anne C. (detail)  [5]

Hari P.  Silver print, 101 cm x 76 cm. [6]

MJeanne M. (triptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm. [7]

Julien R.-M. (diptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm.

   Light box, 4,68 m x 3,90 m. [8]

Thérèse N. (triptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm.

   Light box, 4,68 m x 3,90 m. [9]

Christian M. (diptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm.

   Vinyl prints, each 4,5 m x 3 m. [10]

The Instant Before Death (triptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm. [11]

The Instant Before Death.

   Installation, 1996. [12]

Dominique G. (triptych).

   Silver prints, each 101 cm x 76 cm. [13]

Le temps file. Installation, 2017. [14]

Silences. Installation,

   solar backlighting, 2002-2004. [15]

Présences. Vinyl canvas, 2016. [16]

Présences. Idem. [17]