ANCUEI S'EMBRASSOUN, DEMAN D'AMASSOUN
By Anna Haillot
ABOUT THE PROJECT
This project, called Ancuei s'embrassoun, deman d'amassoun*, is composed of a series of photos and a text in which I paint a portrait of the territory where I have lived the longest: the French Southeast. Also called « The French Riviera », this space is a massive touristic destination where important inequalities of wealth cohabit. Perpetually in a love and loveless relationship with this place - seeking to escape it when I am there, being enchanted when I am not - I seek to understand these feelings and to deconstruct the global fantasy that hovers over it. I am working on this project from Limoges, a small town located in what is known in France as « La diagonale du vide » (the diagonal of the void), a sparsely populated strip that crosses the Hexagon from the southwest to the northeast of France. Thanks to this remoteness and the contrast that separates these two places, I find the necessary distance to observe the evils of the French Riviera: the perpetual surveillance, the rising Mediterranean, the artificial landscapes, the judicial irregularities at the Italian border concerning exiled people, the proximity of tax havens, the nervousness, the sun that crushes people's thoughts... For a year and a half, I went back and forth between the French Riviera and Limoges. I look for the nocturnal side of this immaculate sky, the mystical nightmare of this shining sea in the images and in the places. The fauna, the flora and the humans cohabit with the carcasses and the smell of burning. This project becomes for me a form of counter-fantasy of this territory, far from the luxurious imaginary, closer to the danger which prowls in the middle of the palm trees.
*Proverb from Nice which means : Today they kiss, tomorrow they knock each other out.
" I have a very sensitive relationship with photography. I constantly seek to go to places that will bring me bodily sensations in order to make images. Generally, these sensations are related to ataraxia, oceanic feeling or dangerous gravity. I don't have a technical relationship with the images. I prefer to have a sensitive relationship to them, and to test things by modifying the elements directly on the camera (for example, for the redness of certain images, I just colored my flash with a felt pen). I enjoy the uncertainty of the setting, the accident and the dust.
I find the image of reality more touching than reality itself. It allows me to keep a certain awareness of death, in a healthy relationship with this idea. I'm not afraid of it, but I like to remember that it can happen at any time. Photography allows me to build my memory and my fantasies, it projects me into a world that I totally construct, drawing on elements of reality. Thanks to this, my sensations are accentuated, my relationship to the living and ghostly world takes on great importance. I tend to over-contemplate what surrounds me. Sometimes I would like to project myself inside an insect or a raindrop. I have many feelings of love for the world, photography allows me to translate them."
ANNA HAILLOT & PEP
Anna Haillot participated in the PEP exhibition "Obsessions":