Images produced without manipulation (DSLR Camera, Canon). They are part of a project I undertook while in Paris (January & February 2018), visiting, registering and studying works in museums and churches.
Taking pictures in spaces like this was initially a kind of pilgrimage (in the sense explained by Proust/Ruskin). I have other similar projects (also available here) which were realised in other European cities (in Portugal, Poland, the Netherlands, Norway), years before having a chance to step out in Paris, but the quintessence of them all abide there, the ideal place for the construction of hiérarchives.
The following principle was always followed: not to have a script. I photographed only what truly affected my senses, without looking for titles and authors, which in the case of more obscure works I (re-)discovered later on, when coming back to the pictures, and some remain till now unknown or unconscious. This is what I intend here by "en profane," an expression I got from Michel Foucault's essay about Manet.
Colour, darkness and contrast, as well as texture are important (I want an effect which reveals the forces behind/throughout the image). Not having the most modern model of camera also helps here, because when you use a larger ISO, unexpected effects of pseudo-solarization follow.
A framework is sometimes underlined sometimes obliterated (as a parergon, in Derridean sense). This isn't any academic, instructive exercise, quite on the contrary. The images should "speak" by themselves. The truth is in their auras, even if the aura is lost, when it is lost—don't you have an answering service?
This is an attempt to release the images from all the discursive networks that supposedly support them as officially sanctioned cultural artefacts (but if these networks were not official, my intention would be the same). The images should haunt us to the extent that we fail to name them, as dream impressions or memory failures.
***Original works photographed here include a detail from a Pierre Bonnard's "Études de nus" (1910), Paul Sérusier's "Le Talisman" (1888), Paul Gauguin's "Marine avec vache" (1888), Picasso's "La buveuse d'absinthe" (1901), Carolus-Duran's "Fatin Latour et Oulevay" (1861), Gustave Courbet's "L'homme à la ceinture de cuir: portrait de l'artiste," Gustave Guillaumet's "Le Sahara" (1867), Toulouse-Lautrec.
Some afterthoughts: Sérusier's talisman is, for me, a perfect illustration of this trivial physical principle, which here I quote through the words of the accursed American physicist David Bohm (in order to remind you how much trouble the trivial can do): "... only discrete frequencies of light can be emitted, corresponding to the discrete jumps between the various possible energy levels..." Coubert reminds me inescapably of John Lydon. In a little precious book by Danièle Devynck, I stumbled and was caught in the following Vuillard's quotation about Lautrec: "un jour, affolé par un coup de feu, les Natanson l'on trouvé assis en tailleur sur son lit: il venait de tirer sur des araignées." Et vous, mes enfants (la voix est peut-être de Jacqueline Millière)... savez-vous ce que Niezsche disait à propos des araignées? For a sketch of explanation, see my blackboards pédagogiques. Sur Paris, il disait ça: "Als Artist hat man keine Heimat in Europa außer in Paris; die delicatesse in allen fünf Kunstsinnen, die Wagner's Kunst voraussetzt, die Finger für nuances, die psychologische Morbidität, findet sich nur in Paris. Man hat nirgendswo sonst diese Leidenschaft in Fragen der Form, diesen Ernst in der mise en scene — es ist der Pariser Ernst par excellence." The following is from Perto do Coração Selvagem (Clarice Lispector): "Aos poucos sonhava com carneiros azuis, com ir a uma escola no meio do mato, com gatos bebendo leite vermelho em pires de ouro. E cada vez mais se adensavam os sonhos e adquiriam cores difíceis de se diluir em palavras."