OUR WEBSITES
English
Basket
article added
Proceed to checkout

BOOKS

10.09.2019

|
Share:
The written word before the image. We have become used to pictures being the dominating feature, accompanied by a text or even just a caption; but in her most recent book (the French edition, Parce que... was already released last year), Sophie Calle has inverted the relationship between image and text. On the left-hand page is a text explaining why the French artist pressed the shutter in a specific moment, yet on the right-hand page there is no actual picture: the reader has to take the time to pull a loose photograph out from the sleeve created by the Japanese bookbinding.

While at first it may seem that this is just a bit of playfulness, it is, in fact, a subtle reflection on the way we deal with pictures and react to photographs. The renowned artist has been working for over forty years, creating inimitable combinations of narratives, photographs, performance and video, and conceiving every aspect down to the tiniest detail. In this regard, the new publication is no different: opening its Bordeaux red cover with shimmering touches of gold, the viewer is at first amazed by the apparent lack of images. This makes the individual photographs, once withdrawn from the sleeves, all the more precious and remarkable. At the same time, the interplay between text and image does not explain anything. As with former productions, this project only reveals associative and subjective thoughts and ideas, where the fine line between fiction and reality, intimacy and disclosure, object and reproduction, is artistically blurred.

Calle has already presented the concept of this series in a number of exhibitions (most recently the Un certain regard exhibition at the Fotomuseum Winterthur), where the framed photographs are covered with cloths embroidered with the text corresponding to the pictures hidden behind them. In the book, each text begins with “Because...” (or, as in the original French, “Parce que...”) and explains the reason why the picture exists, or why the artist chose this particular place and time to take the picture. The interplay of texts and images captures brief memories and personal moments from the artist's life. Once again, Calle allows the viewer to become a voyeur or an accomplice, offering supposed insight into her private sphere. The elaborate format she has chosen for the book constitutes the perfect packaging for the series. (Ulrich Rüter)

72 pages, 32 photographs, Japanese bookbinding
17 x 24 cm. English edition, Éditions Xavier Barral

Sophie Calle

Born in 1953, Sophie Calle is an influential, contemporary, conceptual artist. Using photography, installation, text and film, she constructs narratives that oscillate between reality and invention. Her work has been exhibited and honoured internationally. In 2010 she received the Hasselblad Foundation Award. She lives in Malakoff near Paris, and in New York.

Éditions Xavier Barral
Share this page:
via mail Mail
STAY UP TO DATE WITH THE LFI NEWS CHANELS: GET THE LFI APP:
lfi
on facebook
lfi
newsletter
lfi
app
close