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20.07.2019 Europe

Adventure and trouble at European photo show in Paris

By Rosslyn Hyams - RFI
Ed Alcock
JUL 20, 2019 EUROPE

'Circulation(s)' is an exhibition at the 104 Culture Centre in Paris which takes visitors on a Europe-wide visual, sensorial experience. It reveals the concerns of contemporary continental photographers.

From the treatment of migrants to enhanced landscapes, the exploration of the human form and human occupation of space, the show covers a vast range of topics and talents.

Great British . . . and now French
Ed Alcock is Franco-British. He applies his photographic art, inspiration and humour to the Brexit issue. He hangs his series on two perpendicular walls to form the corner of a room, wallpapered in pink, red and white. The simple wooden frames are of different sizes, as if they were hanging on a living room wall, or in a corridor.

Beynd the decor, his 'Home Sweet Home' project also contains personal disappointment, disbelief as well as a desire to understand why so many people in the UK would want to leave the European Union.

Unseen landscapes
Finnish photographer Jaako Kahilaniemi takes black and white photos of beautiful landscapes that are part of some people's everyday. Their power to astound the senses is weakened by routine.

So, in order to restore some of their magic, he colours parts of the photographs with luminous reds and greens. The result draws attention to simple beauty that we tend to ignore. Hence the title of his project, 100 Hectares of Understatement.

Occupying solitude, all mine
Spanish photographer Ruben Martin de Lucas' wittily-named works, 'Minimal Republics 1-5', an award-winning project of graphically designed illusions, says as much about the need for isolation as it does about the human occupation of space.

Configurations which are as pleasing to the eye as the patterns in the wheat or on water, lead the eye and the brain down a path which will in any case be the right one.

Shapely bodies
On close inspection, the curious objects in some of Chloe Rosser's works, the most intriguing, are actually human bodies. They are folded or arranged in such a way as to turn them into shapes, things. Her treatment of the light on skin adds to the trick.

Rosser's sculptural views are in a section with sometimes disturbing human experiences channelled through photographic art work. The name the organisers have given to this room is 'Can you erect a monument to your own pain?' Rosser's contribution is possibly the least subtle answer to the question, and also the least painful.