Text by Éric Reinhardt.
Hardcover with slipcase
230 x 280 mm
This publication consists of a series consists of eight large format black and white photographs of agency models. Chosen as the basis, the raw material for the laboratory process that followed. Each picture is named after a brush used to paint and apply the make up, and also after the equivalent digital retouching tools found in image processing software. Brushes and pigments applied the make up in the spirit of tribal painting, or in a kind of initiatory rite. The models’ faces are simply supports here. Reduced to mere surface. The pose is neutral and the gaze absent, as if trained on the woman’s own inner life. The expression is exteriorised only by the paint, which is imposed on the model, its passive recipient. Each portrait has its own pictorial style, which differs from one model to another. It is then placed against a digital ground that repeats the pictorial motif of the face. Sometimes overlapping, this ground also adds to the abstraction of an image whose only depth is on the inside.
About the Artist
Valérie Belin was born in 1964 in Boulogne-Billancourt, France. She lives and works in Paris, France.
About the Publisher
Atelier EXB, also known as ‘Éditions Xavier Barral’ publishes works that address new forms of photography, contemporary art and sciences. Founded in 2002 by Xavier Barral, and taken over in 2020 by the five members of the team (Jordan Alves, Nathalie Chapuis, Yseult Chehata, Charlotte Debiolles and Perrine Somma), the publishing house conceives each book with great attention to both content and form. They seek to question the forms of photography, to bring to light artistic voices, to approach the major questions which innervate our contemporary societies through the image.