“The ideal point of view”
The earliest aspirations of my childhood were to paint. By my early twenties, however, these aspirations had led me to photography, that undeniable mirror of existence which enabled me to accurately capture my motifs both in matter and in time, thus revealing them in their total uniqueness. There is the world we perceive with our senses but, beyond this, there is another world which pulses within us, in our dreams, our illusions, our feelings. The definitions of illusion as something untrue or as contrary to reality has always repelled me for how can one live without illusions? But what if the illusionist began to believe in his own magic?Would this make him a fool? A Don Quixote, a poet? “Such is my quest,follow the star...” sang Jacques Brel in L`´homme de la Mancha”, and it became my goal too.
For the last few decades I have explored both the real and the fantasy worlds; also in my commissioned work which has opened up to a fascinating “cabinet of curiosities” where an oyster, a pot of jam or a loaf of bread can take the aspect of the marvelous. Banality just does not exist.
My work being mainly contemplative in nature, I chose the 8x10 large-format camera for its ability to render detail, making the image almost tactile. It is also, in its clumsiness, a fixed open window on the world, a camera-obscura, a tool of perfection for “composing” the image as opposed to “taking” it. The set is built in three dimensions, backgrounds, empty spaces, I try to be in control of every square inch in the frame, rehearsing the final shot exactly as one would on a stage, until I reach the “moment of grace”, all this from the ideal point of view : the lens. The final photograph will never be retouched or further manipulated, so I must come as close to perfection as I possibly can. There is a beauty in making the picture exist in reality before recording it. Somehow it becomes the proof of one’s own existence.
Between 2006 and 2009, I swapped my studio for the Australian wilderness, a new world… the open-air! My work during these three years followed the same pattern although this time, instead of starting from a definite idea and gathering the details to serve this idea, I gathered the details first, “scanning” ecstatically what could not be collected in my “cabinet of curiosities”, the revelation of another dimension, nature which in its power resembles at times a huge geoglyph ordered by the gods, every detail vibrating with life and yet also something more… the awareness of creation which breathes from every stone, every water-pool, every sea-slug. I then reassembled all these fragments into a new order, a monumental puzzle in an attempt to reconstruct the amazing world I have glimpsed into and which led me inevitably to think of the aboriginal “Dream-Time”
Today, back into my studio, I contemplate once again eternal subjects, flowers... In this world essentially filled withconcept-effect-never-seen-before- based pictures, I find it brave and almost avant-garde to keep-on talking nuances so, in “Petits bouquets sur fonds en grisaille”, which I started 2013, I am experimenting this time with newer techniques, slowly discovering a new world of tones, convinced more than ever that beauty in photography remains in its instantaneousness, its credibility and authenticity.