Exhibition and book «Un paysage de la modernité»
"Un paysage de la modernité", the first title in the collection "Les Cahiers de l'Ouest" (Editions Infolio), is a study by Bruno Marchand, professor at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), which shows the extent to which the western part of Lausanne bears the mark of the Modern Movement, particularly in its built-up areas and its housing architecture. Within the framework of this book (graphically produced by the Atelier Poisson), second-year students in the Bachelor of Photography program at the ECAL/Ecole cantonale d'art de Lausanne, under the direction of Matthieu Gafsou, have offered their photographic perspectives on this theme. To be discovered in conjunction with the exhibition from October 13 to 21 at the Galerie l'elac.
"The students were given the task of making personal images, showing the places in their use. Some of them will sometimes have expanded the territory of their photographic investigations, not for convenience but to reflect the point of view of the inhabitant and his relationship to the neighborhood. In concrete terms, each student was assigned a very precisely delimited area, grouping together one or more housing complexes. For almost a year, they had to submit to the constraint of limiting themselves to this portion of territory. This is one of the most difficult exercises in photography: to make exotic what is so familiar to us that we no longer look at it. All the more so since the area covered is very small and does not allow for stylistic escapes or formal subterfuges. The banal can become picturesque, sublime or beautiful. It is all a question of point of view. And it is by implementing such an approach that one develops one's language. That one learns to make a photograph that is not only subjected to the magnificence of the subject but that also participates in the making of the latter. It is in my opinion when one understands this nuance that one becomes a true photographer. In order to capture something other than the strict surface of the world, you have to immerse yourself in it. Meet the people, dare to do it, do it again, come back again and again. The exercise teaches the permanent struggle of creation against wear and tear or distraction. It also makes it possible to discover that the profession of photographer can hardly be practiced alone. This project has resulted in as many series as there are students. Fifteen series with their own coherence, their aesthetics, their history. For the needs of this thematic booklet, it was necessary to make sure that the visions of each one meet. Rather than detracting from the photographs, this diversity of approaches and styles says a lot, it seems to me, about these discreet residential areas, so typical of Switzerland. It is in the details and micro-events, in the little things, that we discover and understand a little better these "big estates" that we usually do not look at."
Text by Matthieu Gafsou, photographer and teacher at ECAL "A Landscape of Modernity" From October 13 to 21, Monday to Friday, 11 am to 5 pm.
Book, 19 x 26 cm, paperback with flaps, 186 pages, 186 illustrations: photographs, drawings, maps and plans in black and white and in color. Infolio Editions. ISBN 978-2-88474-385-3. Price CHF 29.-
A publication of the communes of western Lausanne: Bussigny - Chavannes-près-Renens - Crissier - Ecublens - Prilly - Renens - Saint-Sulpice - Villars-Sainte-Croix With the support of the State of Vaud, Service Développement territorial DTE and Service Communes et logement DIS as well as the support of Patrimonium Galerie l'elac 5, avenue du Temple CH-1020 Renens www.ecal.ch