PLAY was nominated for the First Book Award at Paris Photo x Aperture 2022, offering an opportunity to revisit the work of this image-maker through this dynamic first monograph, reflecting his fifteen years of photographic work.
PLAY is the paragon of Philippe Jarrigeon’s particular vision of style. Seen as a parody of a large Hollywood studio, the first large-format book by the forty-year-old French photographer, who attended the Ecole Cantonale d’Art de Lausanne (ECAL), invites us into the world of television and cinema in the 1990s. Here, sarcasm and fantasy are king. Between portraits, still lifes, landscapes, architecture, and fashion, his colorful imagery shows his attention to detail, his taste for diptychs, and his particular sensitivity to the object. Philippe Jarrigeon plays with the polysemous term of the title, offering different levels of reading that compile fifteen years of experience. In this mental and visual library, where “everything seems deviant,” he summons Beetlejuice, the heroine of Vertigo, the praying mantis of Microcosmos, and Cher Horowitz of Clueless. But he also invites Afghan greyhounds in the company of women on a baroque bed, while drawing his golden gun, armed with a tube of lipstick.
Pop culture and modern aesthetics
All the iconography here stems from the many clients for whom he has worked and from whom many images have been taken. Philippe Jarrigeon has collaborated with luxury brands (Chanel, Roger Vivier, Louis Vuitton…), artists in the music industry (Snoop Dogg…), and magazines (Vogue, Double, Purple, PIN-UP Magazine…). This adept of the side step has always been “fascinated by the device of the window,” as he formulates it in the interview printed in a booklet, thrown in the book. Here, he sublimates, pulsates, and even exalts the diversity of his work and creates his own game with a sequence of images suitable for a televisual “zapping.” His career is a heap of eclectic and colorful creations where the “glam cohabits with the consumer product, the exceptional with the trivial, the beautiful with the ugly, the too serious with the too funny.” In its chromatic progression, this first monograph, conceived with the help of Beda Achermann as artistic director, takes on the appearance of a “color chart novel.” An invitation to (re)discover his work at the crossroads of worlds filled with offbeat humor, sex appeal, and “acidulous memories.
PLAY, RVB Books, 162 pages, 108 color photographs, 38 €.