The current work of Sophie Elbaz, is a sort of posthumous work. And it is such in many ways. Her images revealed a capacity to speak of invisible things , intimate and violent contamination offending simultaneously the image, the regard and the conscience.
The long organic ritual which allows for this appearance is itself proliferation is made of mold, which develops in the emulsion and the chemicals of the photographic image. She reminds us that the thin slip of film, which invites the image to live within, as invisible and unsubstantial as it seems, is a living organism, susceptible to mutation. This is surely the principle contribution of her work to the history of the image, to allow it to mingle with the micro-organisms that issue from a natural alchimia.
The work presented is articulated around a central piece, a metamorphosis : I Accuse. An African man facing us as he is slowly transformed by his changing environnement. He is then partly absorbed by the contamination around him in the fourth image. From one negative, four images have been produced during years. Through its own transformation, I Accuse symbolises the progressing contamination of the human being .
The series is introduced by Atomic Tree and closes with Facing Emptiness.
Atomic Tree not only symbolizes life, but also knowledge, and therefore wisdom. In introduction, it forces us to wonder: Are we properly using our knowledge today?
Facing Emptiness invites us to face our own responsability considering our future. The image thus reminds us that we still have a choice.
- I ACCUSE
- ATOMIC TREeS
- FACING EMPTINESS