The image as an event
wanting to say, not knowing what one wants to say, not being able to
believe what one wants to say and always says or almost" Samuel Beckett *
This sentence from Samuel Beckett expresses at the same time complexity
and coherence which we can face when we speak about art. To think about
the form, the image, space and time are very important questions in my
artistic work, even essential.
I thus decided to understand my working process in its essence and not
in its artistic form. Wanting to define the images or to understand them
by words is an exercise which requires reading between the images, to
see what there is inside the image, in its interior.
This composition of various elements makes my work a considered and definite
network, like a universe having its own elements of existence. Each one
has its role and takes its place without harming the others; it is composing
itself with the others.
I forsake the question of representation of reality and resemblance to
privilege a fiction which can sometimes be narrative. These images are
close to some paintings which struggle between abstraction and definition
as those of the German painter Magnus Von Plessen from where a feeling
of complexity and incompleteness transpires which interests me enormously.
The image requires time. Being relatively secret, it creates this time
suspension in order to be revealed.
The images then become the reconstruction of a language which contains
codes to define this universe. They exist to say who I am. The various
plans create a space to give us a different aspect of reality. The juxtaposition
of plans weaves the space and brings us into constant negotiation in a
search for our place in relation to the image.
The word 'tilting' fits rather well into this feeling of change, of continuous
research in which time controls everything. The image is an event where
the “before”, the “during” and the “after”
bring a whole to this universe; a universe in which I seek neither to
describe nor to reveal something, but rather to share my real-life experience
of reality, my way of seeing space and reflecting it, expressing it.
Each photograph is plotted as a map: an heterogeneous constitution with
permanent fusion of borders. My images are always made using concern for
the perception and the expression of a defined territory (the surface).
It is a made-up configuration assembled on the same surface by weaving
a data network. Nothing is brought to the front because the connection
is laterally created, bringing depth thanks to the lines of latitude and
longitude. There is not a preconceived subject at the beginning; the design
of the image is done in space and all the existing data oscillate in time
as in a labyrinth. The image is only formed by an interval of rhythms
in the data which make this time I seek.
I really do not want to stop in front of the image; I seek its origin
and its incidence. The transformation which exists from the form to the
space makes this research into the creation of a concept. We are simultaneously
in the center of the image and in its periphery. The feeling of emptiness
around us creates a suspension, a reserve and an unvoiced remark which
makes the reading neither linear nor historical. The images conjure up
a different reality and temporality, a narration which does not fit in
This device sometimes creates confusion between reality and narrative
fiction. In particular with the tight framing of characters and close
focus, I seek to capture the essential in the image; a little in the manner
of Jeff Wall. With this device I create a triangular play in which I attempt
to allow the glances of the subjects to give a kind of exclusion which
bring us back to the intimacy of my work.
Time is imperceptible and the characters are created in time, as happens
in the work of Pierro Della Francesca. They belong to one moment when
reality remains perpetual. This suspension of time, this kind of indecision,
captures the action, whereas the essence of the movement still remains
to come. The image retains in fact some events in order to highlight them.
The space-time layer in which the composition of space is conceived creates
an ontological return to the image. Thanks to the frame of the image and
its ambiguity, it remains in memory to coexist with reality. In other
words, this ambiguity brings fluidness and nothing is motionless. The
movement is present.
We are then in the pre-action; I prefer to stop in the composition of
the image when I really start to like it. Indeed, when I feel that it
is likely to arrive, I take all possible steps to capture the elements
which are of the order of the temporal.
With the filing of images and this composition of various points of view,
I do the same as in “La Invención de Morel” of Byo
Casares: I create my own fancy which moves and substitutes the glance.
The image must become an event non-time related because it creates time.
So it is “achronistic” and non anachronistic. It proposes
an open reading to everyone during which we must take time to observe
and to move ourselves in order to be located at various points of space
to reconstitute the image.
* Written by Samuel Beckett in Molloy
Klaus Fruchtnis © 2004