Can the word « personal » in the generic expression « personal works » relate to this simple reality :
« I don’t know what I did » ?
I don’t know what I was doing. Or at least, I didn’t know what I was doing when I was doing it. And that’s why I did it.
Because of the need to do it. Nothing else. And I want this kind of work to exist for what it is.
And the world we’re living in, is asking me to put this reality into words.
Because art now does need words. In order to explain what we do. As if people couldn’t get it, just by looking at the images. Just by feeling. What they feel when looking at them. Whatever they are feeling, I believe they can get it, just by looking at the images.
I am coming from Philosophy. I can put words on anything. And on anything I do. Afterwards. I was a journalist, a curator : words are not a big of a deal for me.
Afterwards, we can always find so many meanings, words and explanations. We can always give way and surrender. We can always hand over to what the world is asking us. We can always concede, break down, yield. Afterwards, we can always knuckle under what the world asks us - and not only the art world : putting words on images and replacing an impulse by a meaning.
But the impulse is the meaning.
A momentum, this is what these series are about. The moose. A burst that maybe we can film, but a burst is hard to put into words.
I can tell you a story though. I remember this piece I saw, one day in the middle of a parisian art fair. I think it was at the Grand Palais, or the Carousel du Louvre. I don’t remember the name of the artist. But I remember the neon in blue saying :
« I don’t want to be an artist, I just want to be happy. »
Living, playing, doing sometimes absurd things, or things that can be seen or considered as absurd by ourselves or others, is part of our lives. Part of our jobs. And part of our missions, I believe. At least part of the mission I assigned myself.
Alessandra d’Urso, a photographer I love, says that photography is a lifestyle. Indeed it is.
And I believe that our first mission, as photographers, is to keep feeling alive.
Because photography originally, is just a moment in life.
I am struggling to live the life I want to live.
I am struggling to stay myself in a world that is always asking me to be something - else.
I am struggling to have enough time and space to remain who I am, and to become who I am.
I guess all artists are. And I believe this is our first mission.
Often the most difficult one. Because we need space, and time. And in the world we’re living in, this is not free.
It might sound naive, or common. But I don’t think it is.
I think the most known things are the ones that are the easiest to be forgotten.
It is well known : artists are dreamers. We do believe that everyone needs and deserves a house, a warm bedroom, a cosy bed and time and space. This is not a posture. This is not metaphysics. It is political as everything is political. But it’s before politics. It is the ground on which we can dream of a better world. The ground on which we can grow.
You think it’s an ideology ? Well, since when being made of flesh and bones is an ideology ?
We need space, and time. Not only artists do. Humans, do. And in the world we’re living in, this is not free.
What we do, is for free.
It is an insane present we’re offering to the world, while the world didn’t ask anything from us. The world wouldn’t mind if we weren’t born at all. If we die tomorrow. And that’s okay. We know it. We don’t expect the planet to stop turning round and round if we die tomorrow. Doing what we do, is not an ego trip. We do what we do because we don’t have a choice.
We do it, because it’s a matter of life and death.
We do it, in order to be able to look at ourselves in a mirror. We do it, in order to be able to get up every day.
What is it that we do ? Well, we’re handing over the most intimate things we do, to the world - while nobody asked anything from us. We yield what is the most intimate in ourselves. Moments. Feelings. For free of course.
Are we putting ourselves in danger by doing it ? Sure we do. We are exposed. It’s okay for us if some people think we’re ridiculous. Stupid. Vain. We have no choice. No other choice. Than doing it. Than being what we are. And we take the risk. By taking it, we’re also accepting the gift of life.
And still, we are asked to explain what we do. And we have to be short. To go straight to the point.
How can we explain, that we need to breath ?