Galerie DUMONTEIL Shanghai is pleased to hold its first exhibition in the Year of the sheep – The Displaced, featuring photographs by Christine Barbe. The series not only share the lasting interest of Gallery in the animal theme, but also is gaining its momentum in the growth of contemporary Photography Art.
Christine Barbe was born in Grenoble, France. Since graduating with a degree in Art and Cinema from St. Charles University in Paris, Barbe has traveled extensively around the world, including North Africa, Antilles, and Eastern Europe. She emerged on the US art scene in the mid-1980s and was quickly recognized for her outsider's view of California culture, characterized by snapshots of pool halls and swimming pools lighted by dazzling colors. This “California Period” was followed by a transition to New York, where she painted the chaos and isolation of the urban masses. She later moved back to France, turning to a more graphic style incorporating her early trainings in etchings and engravings. She has been featured in Museum shows at the Museum of Modern Art of Grenoble, Espace Ricard, Modern Museum of Art in Japan, the San José Museum of Contemporary Art and in numerous private galleries.
In her series The Displaced, all the photographs capture the animals in still poses in an unfamiliar universe. Such approach to positioning generates something peculiar and fascinating brought out through photography. Their hieratic poses and accusing gaze are turning toward the lens. The absence of movement and of gesture creates an uneasy and incongruous ambiance. The incompatible worlds come face to face, confront each other, the salvage and the domestic, the animal and the human. The series lies between magic and tragedy, between fragility and strength, and simultaneously plays on documenting fear and fiction (the animals are placed in the center of an environment that is unknown, hostile and beautiful). The animals appear to be trapped, in disarray. These 'forgotten' find their ways despite their situations, in which they should never have been - a long road at night, a sky dominated by factory towers, a dazzling light, as well as the unsettling conditions.
However, in the almost magical nature of these spaces of plays between shadow and light, clear and obscure, the animals regain an alluring presence and a mythical aura, and call for our introspection: who is the true intruder?