Noémie Goudal in L'Éclaireur FNAC

2 photography exhibitions not to be missed at the Rencontres d'Arles this summer
July 16 2022 The Rencontres d'Arles kicked off their 53rd edition on July 4th. L'Éclaireur was there and selected the twelve exhibitions not to be missed if you plan to go to the festival this summer.

 , by Noémie Goudal

Image taken from the video “Below to the Deep South”, 2021. ©Noémie Goudal / courtesy Galerie Les Filles du Calvaire

Fascinated by the geological history of the planet and the different climates that have reigned there, Noémie Goudal enjoys undoing and reweaving the links that unite being and non-human. From his complex prints and films, touching on theatrical performance, always emerges a luxuriant vegetation when it is not a question of rocky environments. With this poetry of his own, the artist transforms reality and deploys illusions to undermine the indexicality of the image as a marker of truth. The spatio-temporal immensity and its variations, taken in a perpetual momentum, thus question our approach to ecology and testify to the need to better understand the environment which is ours.

Phoenix , by Noémie Goudal, at the Church of the Trinitarians. Until 08/28/2022.

A feminist vanguard

After a decade circulating throughout Europe,  Une Avant-garde féministe  has taken up its summer quarters at the Mécanique générale . In the 1970s, the artistic took off in a context of social and sexual revolution. Nearly 200 works, from the Verbund collection in Vienna, sketch out this history of art – often relayed to the margins – in the light of those that have upset it. The exhibition testifies to the inventiveness of 71 women artists who, through photographs, but also videos and performance, knew how to denounce ordinary sexism, societal inequalities and patriarchal power structures to propose a new "image of wife ". Among them are important figures of the 8th  art movement such as ORLAN, Cindy Sherman or Ana Mendieta to name but a few.

A feminist avant-garde , at the Mécanique générale. Until 09/25/2022.

Evergreen , by Lukas Hoffman

Hidden on the floor of the city's Monoprix,  Evergreen  unveils two sets of monochrome shots by Lukas Hoffmann. For the first, the Swiss-Australian artist walked the streets of Berlin to capture imprecise movements, without ever looking through the viewfinder of his medium. These suspended moments of existence contrast with the second series, also taken in the view camera. Here, the hurried wanderings replace the slowness of the precise gesture. Captured from all angles, a damaged wall or the faded letters of a container decompose to the point of abstraction and invite those who contemplate to exercise their gaze.

Evergreen , by Lukas Hoffmann, Monoprix. Until 09/25/2022.

Waha (Oasis) , Seif Kousmate


Originally from Morocco, Seif Kousmate raises a major problem that is rife in his native land: the disappearance of oases, which are essential to the survival of local populations. The overexploitation of their raw materials, coupled with more and more numerous episodes of drought, are pushing the new generations to flee to other horizons. In  Waha  – an Arabic term for these springs in the middle of the desert – the former engineer and self-taught photographer materializes the degradation of water points. Using acid and vestiges of endemic flora, he contaminates his images and creates a poetic disorder. Content and form are then superimposed in a noticeable way. 


Waha (Oasis) , by Seif Kousmate, at the Church of the Preachers Brothers. Until 08/28/2022.

 Did Nothing Wrong , Mika Sperling


Mika Sperling exhibits sensitive and resilient work at the Eglise des Frères Prêcheurs. In  I Did Nothing Wrong , the photographer intends to break a family and societal taboo. She tackles her grandfather's crimes in three stages. Shots immortalized on the road that separates the house of childhood and the house of the culprit are juxtaposed with authentic family photos, cut out and rearranged. At the end of the journey, a fictional story features a deceased relative and an artist waiting for answers, a reinvented scenario that reflects an attempt at reconciliation with her painful past.


I Have Done Nothing Wrong , by Mika Sperling, at Church of the Preachers Brothers. Until 08/28/2022.

And yet it moves


In  And Yet She Turns  brings together several photographers who share their vision of what life is like in the United States in the 21st century. Looks confront each other and begin a singular dialogue that crystallizes the complexity of existence. The post-documentary style, common to the nine exhibited artists, shows more than it tells a multitude of realities, sometimes banal, sometimes out of the ordinary. Far from getting bogged down with any opinions or simplistic narratives, everyone thus participates in establishing a freedom that is sometimes disconcerting, but which aspires towards an authenticity of being.


And yet, she turns,  at the Arles antique departmental museum. Until 08/28/2022.

In His Time , Romain Urhausen


Unknown in France, Romain Urhausen has nevertheless had a most prolific career. His photographic writing, resolutely oriented towards experimentation, stands out for a singular oscillation between the French humanist school and the subjective German school of the 1950s and 1960s. The Luxembourg artist thus enjoyed studying the structure of his compositions with humor and delicacy to better go beyond the more classic representations of the daily life of his time. His unexpected framings and stark contrasts stand out from the works of his peers, also exhibited here and there on the walls of the Espace Van Gogh in order to generate new “chosen affinities”.


In His Time , by Romain Urhausen, at Espace Van Gogh. Until 09/25/2022.

Lee Miller, Professional Photographer (1932-1945) , by Lee Miller


Alternately model, icon of surrealism, fashion photographer and war correspondent, Lee Miller has had a busy life. Her great work, crowned with success, nevertheless remained in the shadows until its rediscovery in the 1990s. The eponymous exhibition looks back on the prolific career of an artist whose history has preferred to remember as the one of Man Ray's muses. Working for prestigious magazines such as  Vogue  and  Vanity Fair , she has worked for freedom in many ways. Behind her lens, women freed themselves from the shackles of the time. Photoreporter accredited to the US Army, she was also one of the first to document the horror of the Dachau and Buchenwald camps. 


Lee Miller, Professional Photographer (1932-1945) , at Espace Van Gogh. Until 09/25/2022.

In India. 1978-1989 , by Mitch Epstein


Between 1978 and 1989, Mitch Epstein visited India eight times. There, the photographer compiled a body of extremely rich images. During his travels, he likes to capture a vast set of "sub-cultures" that his family ties allow him to understand from the inside, despite a desire to affix an outside view of these societies and the traditions that are theirs. clean. This double point of view finally delivers a testimony as complex as is this country where the codes of castes, classes and religions still clash violently with contemporary politics.


In India. 1978-1989 , by Mitch Epstein, at the Abbey of Montmajour. Until 09/25/2022.



The Interposed Veil

Initiated by  Fisheye ,  Le  Voile interposé  explores the potential of the immersive image. Unpublished works – signed among others by the Obvious collective or the Pussykrew duo – challenge our ability to distinguish the border between the real and the virtual, and question the future of technologies using artificial intelligence and  deep learning . As an example, Joan Fontcuberta and Pilar Rosado, also hooked, were inspired by  deepfakes to distort the features of politicians accused of sexual assault. In full speech, their faces then take on airs of inopportune enjoyment. Their project also continues with the experience they offer at the Cruise. In a series titled  Déjà-Vu , the human gaze is this time replaced by algorithms that use recurring patterns to generate new works.

The Interposed Veil , at the Saint-Césaire Convent. Until 08/21/2022.


Bettina, Poem of Permanent Renewal , by Bettina Grossman

The Rencontres d'Arles presents the first monographic exhibition dedicated to Bettina Grossman. The American artist has spent her life between Europe and the United States, her native country. Following a fire, she lost most of her work and tried, somehow, to rebuild herself in the mythical Chelsea Hotel. Recluse, the chance of the days makes her cross the path of Yto Barrada. The two women form a very strong relationship that will inspire them mutually. Photographs, videos, paintings, sculptures, textile designs… Bettina Grossman's creations decline geometric shapes in a self-referential system with an almost shamanic dimension.

Bettina, poem of permanent renewal, by Bettina Grossman , at the Salle Henri-Comte. Until 08/28/2022.


16 July 2022
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