An image appears before words. How could I describe with words what appears in mind beforehand. Around the mark that the visible leaves us alongside with the sensitive comes photographic pictures as self-expressions. I deliver them without falling into pure subjectivism neither in a conception of art understood as a simple reflection or expression of altruism.
Photography is an art intrinsically linked to life that relays on experience and experimentation. It works on our unconscious, it inhabits our imaginary and allows us to meet people, make discoveries on others human beings and ourselves. I follow my thoughts and attempt to leave my stream of consciousness flow during my quest of understanding human nature.
The use of medium format has become a systematical choice in my work. A heavy camera on a tripod maintains a particular connection with time and has a sustained presence. The small amount of shots implies a very meticulous method and patience as well as a very precise choice in the framing.
Inner Self, 2013
In our society, we have very specific expectations about the dichotomy of gender and the roles that each gender should adopt. However, this dichotomy is not an exclusive point of view. I attempt to question this hypothesis by making portraits of men and women whose identities slip out of the norms. Through these portraits, I try to show that there are several ways of living our lives as human beings.
In the “Inner Self” series, the locations are pared down, no elements disturb the images. Only details of a door or stairs stay visible. The subjects are simply styled. They wear plain clothes which allows the spectator to notice the ambiguity of gender that is revealed in each portraits. It is through a refining approach, of simplification that the questioning spreads itself in order to go further in complexity.
It is while going through those identity-related transitions that I was brought to project on others the questions that dwelled within me. These questions made my subconscious work within my relationships with others. Furthermore it is what brought me to start a body of work on gender. I go further in the understanding of human being heading further in my quest of simplicity. It is through experimentation and my practice that I manage to bring to light deeper feelings. The questioning on identity’s complexity does not end here, I carry on this quest on the understanding of human being.
Body delineates an individual, it comes to confound itself with the external identity; the one we show to others. It is an observation, the carnal envelope claims itself as a necessary support for the construction of ego and its own identity
“Inner Self” is an ongoing project since 2013. It received the Roger de Conynck/fondation Roi Baudouin prize in 2013. And got selected as laureate for the ‘proposition d’artiste 2013’ at Espace photographique Contretype in Brussels, Belgium.
“Anne-Sophie Guillet expresses her authentic sensitivity individually through her work, with her respective subject – namely l’image de soi (images of the self).
The one-on-ones with Anne-Sophie Guillet’s models reflect the young artist’s interest in issued relating to identity and its construction. Having first been explored within her own family through a collection of archives, the notion if identification continues throughout the series of portraits entitled ”Inner Self”, this time in anonimity. Genealogy gives a way to singularity, an individuation that the first name of the person portrayed, revealed in the caption, represents. This information also raises doubt on the model’s genre, sometimes leading to hesitation, reflecting the fact that the image of an individual may not reflect their inner being and may possibly evade them, while it may also represent the fruits of a codified and voluntary creation. The one-to-one that Anne-Sophie Guillet presents invites us to fully educate ourselves on the role, even the importance, of appearances in our relation to each other as much as to ourselves.” – Danielle Leenaerts
Anne-Sophie Guillet (b. 1987). Was born in Oxford, UK. Works and lives in Brussels, Belgium.
Graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels in 2013 with an MFA in visual arts / photography.