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(or the borders of light)

“Ah! my friend, who will find the true face of Eurydice? » (Diderot, Essays on painting, Salons of 1759, 1761, 1763). The tragic story of Orpheus and Eurydice remains one of the most popular Greek myths of our time. Its best-known version remains that dedicated by Ovid and Virgil in the Metamorphoses and The Georgics respectively. Orpheus, son of the muse Calliope, has the divine gift of enchanting all creatures with songs and his lyre. In love with the young Eurydice, he marries the nymph who unfortunately dies on the very day of the wedding following the bite of a viper. Inconsolable, Orpheus undertakes the ultimate transgression by going to hell. Thanks to his artistic gifts he manages to arouse the pity of Hades and Persephone who grant him the right to take Eurydice back to the world of the living on the condition if ne qua non of not turning towards her along the way back. At the gates of hell, Orpheus doubts the presence of his wife and commits the irreparable by looking back. In doing so, he loses her forever... In this version of the myth, the character of Eurydice remains secondary and relatively inconsistent, passive some would say. From the 17th and 18th centuries, opera began to give voice to Eurydice (opera by Monteverdi and Gluck). Offenbach's opera buffa, "Orphée aux enfers" (1858) presents an insolent and impertinent Eurydice who ridicules Orpheus. The 20th century will mark the beginning of modern reinterpretations of the myth (Cocteau, Anouilh) and even feminist ones (Lindqvist, Yourcenar, Stuckel). This photographic series is part of this trend of modernization of the myth of Orpheus by aiming to understand the motivations of a Eurydice who refuses to be saved from an ambiguous hell of shadows and lights. Using a Holga film camera known for its optical defects and its lack of impermeability to light (what we call light leaks) I wanted to explore the notion of borders. Boundaries between the elements, boundary between body and mind, boundary between good and evil. In photography, the beauty of an image is built from contrasts, that is to say the boundaries between shadows and lights. Is the boundary between the elements the prerequisite for the emergence of beauty? “Who said I wanted to follow you, Orpheus? Why were you so sure to look for me here? To force me step by step backward? » (E. Lindqvist, Monologue in Hades). Work carried out in 2020.

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