Date : 2008
Medium : Photography
Size : 50 x 67 cm
In the series entitled Seuils (thresholds), Eric Rondepierre creates a dialogue between scenes extracted from silent films and stills from film reels that have been cut or damaged. The images contain and convey obsessions that are shared by cinema and the history of art in general: the body, desire, eroticism, death, loneliness, etc. The result is a curious amalgam, where two mediums and two different times meet. This association brings cinematographic ghosts back to life in the middle of contemporary scenes, by contrasting black and white against colour, the difference in fashion and hairstyles and, more subtly, in attitudes and postures - unfailing markers of time. “I see a threshold as an area of hesitation, breach, and a sign of discontinuity. It is a call to something different, to the unknown.” Eric Rondepierre.
Eric Rondepierre is more than a photographer. He is a keen observer who dissects our daily life to draw out the essentials. Film, advertising, photography: all inspire him.
What does he get from it? It's not just the obvious evidence that jumps out at the viewer, but the transitions between scenes and movements, the imperceptible details that make the photograph feel strange. Here, we see a metro entrance that definitely places us in Paris, but where exactly? It is a mystery.
This artist works in series, each exploring a unique visual relationship.
How does he work with them? Like others who paint or sculpt, Rondepierre has made diversion his primary medium, looking beyond the images and ideas that affect us: the notion of being in or out of focus, time lag and, metaphorically, the concept of time and its passing, mingling in a Romantic vision past and present.
By looking at the lives of others through an interconnected view, the artist is gradually integrated into his own fictions, sliding gently into autobiography. Is that the artist's back? Who is the black and white fellow?
The title indicates an exit, whereas the two figures are moving in opposite directions. Who do we follow? We are caught in the middle, we remain on the Seuil (“threshold”), the apt title of the series.
But who better than the creator to talk about his work? I will let him have the last word:
"I see the threshold as a place of hesitation, of crossing over, a mark of discontinuity. It is a call to explore the different, the unknown. This shift toward both is also an exciting place where encounters take place and choices are made."