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4 July 2013

Thibaut Cuisset, Le pays clair – Camargue*

Le Pays clair results from several arts residencies undertaken by Thibaut Cuisset in the Camargue, at the invitation of Laetitia Talbot from the Asphodèle Association, in partnership with the Tour du Valat. A unique area that continues to fascinate painters and artists, like all landscapes, the apparently wild and natural Camargue is in fact the result of man’s labour, which has shaped it over the centuries, while confronted with the brute force of the elements that defy each other there. Vegetal, mineral, liquid, the Camargue’s luminous panorama of offers Thibaut Cuisset an incomparable field of exploration, seemingly in perfect harmony with his photographic quest. Horizontality, a theme that Cuisset has never stopped probing since his first countryside studies, here seems like a mystery that he tries to decipher. In the Carmague, as he has done elsewhere, Cuisset puts landscapes in the spotlight. Initially, he undertakes to break down fragments (sea, ricefields, sand, canals, beach huts) and to draw up an inventory of elements (light, colours, atmosphere). From this preliminary observation, knowledge and intuition grow and go on to underpin the structure, tale and construction of the sought after image; a primitive puzzle that the photographer organises and magnifies. Miles away from any ‘impressionist’ aim, the vision that Cuisset offers us of the Camargue world is to be savoured in pure contemplation. A contemplation that invites us to ‘enter into landscape’ like an actor walking on to a stage, for Thibaut Cuisset’s art does indeed lead us to an intimate way of inhabiting and appropriating places.

*The Fair Country – Camargue

Curators: Laetitia Talbot and the Méjan Association.

Exhibition venue: Magasin Électrique, parc des Ateliers, and Espace pour l’Art Gallery, Arles, as part of the ‘Ulysses’ curatorial program coordinated by the FRAC Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur.