FRANCE – PARIS
Born in Toulouse 28 years ago, photographer and visual artist Eloïse Labarbe-Lafon, now based in Paris, has been interested in photography since her early teens, with a particular focus on silver-based techniques. While practising her art, the young creative woman studied art history and cinema. These two worlds led her to film restoration and the colourisation of documentary archives. These experiences, linked to the early days of cinema and memories on film, in turn led her to her own unique artistic practice. By fusing photography and painting, Eloïse Labarbe-Lafon brings to life deep, cold worlds that flirt unabashedly with the fantastic. Both image and object, her works capture moments frozen on a black-and-white silver film. The film is then colourised, using brushes or the pads of her fingers.
This is the same process she used for her “Ghosts” series, in which she hand-coloured a film with oil paint. The paint reveals imperfections such as fingerprints, but also smudges, making each work unique. She depicts bodies and landscapes evoking silence and solitude. Conceived as narratives embracing the strange, Eloïse Labarbe-Lafon is the author of singular tales, both delicate and disquieting, which “are echoes of the lost moments and places of our souls and memories”.
Initiated in 2018, “Fantômes” is a series that has not yet been completed. Taken in Greece, but also in France and Mexico, some of the photographs display solarisation marks, but also traces of light made in the darkroom, “in the tradition of 19th-century spiritualist photos creating from scratch a representation of the invisible”.