•  Installation Shots From: Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
    Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
  •  Installation Shots From: Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
    Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
  •  Installation Shots From: Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
    Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
  •  Installation Shots From: Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
    Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
  •  Installation Shots From: Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
    Pangaea: New Art From Africa And Latin America
30th anniversary
Saatchi Store
Current Exhibition

Clarisse d'Arcimoles

Clarisse d'Arcimoles EXHIBITED AT THE SAATCHI GALLERY

Carnaval (My Brother)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Carnaval (My Brother)

2009

Archival Inkjet print

31 x 42.5 cm
Each of these works by Clarisse d’Arcimoles consists of a photograph from her family album and a picture of the same person taken in 2009 in a scene that’s been exactly reproduced. “I called this series Un-possible retour, which means ‘a possible impossible return’,” D’Arcimoles says. “I grew up partly in French Guyana so in the photos I was re-staging, the location sometimes had changed or become inaccessible and the objects and surroundings could not always be found or re-made. But while the people had grown up, aged and changed, I could feel a certain sense of permanence in them. This photograph is my brother at the carnival; to recreate the image I had to repaint the background and find the same costume. I sometimes make the clothing myself, or when it is too complicated to find a similar fabric I ask a tailor. Even if for my family it has been somewhat tiresome to cooperate for these photos, they really enjoyed it.”
Camille (My Sister)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Camille (My Sister)

2010

Archival inkjet print

32 x 26 cm
“I never work with photomontage, it’s important I make the entire set to recreate an actual atmosphere so my family members can go back to their childhood. Camille (My Sister) is from a school photograph from when she was about 13; she’s 35 now. As a photographer, directing my family members as models was quite a challenge. We needed to find a common understanding in order to achieve the very exact position and expression of the original image while keeping the shot looking natural. It is easier to recreate a picture like this one than one with an elaborate setting. My sister remembered having this photo taken; she had to concentrate during the shooting in order to get the right expression. Every single detail is important and takes time to be checked carefully when comparing the two photos; the gap between young and old should not be visible. Thanks to this new way of observing details that I had never noticed before, I found interesting clues in the images.”
Contact Sheet 9 (Mother)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Contact Sheet 9 (Mother)

2009

Archival inkjet print

31 x 43 cm
“Because technology has changed so much I often had to retouch colours or image qualities on Photoshop. My choice of lenses, format of cameras and films were dependent on the original image. These photographs of my mother were taken when she was 5 or 6 growing up in South Africa. It’s very difficult to get the right angle and lighting. The moment when the original pictures were taken happened naturally in a snap, while its re-creation can take several hours of shooting. To recreate these photos I used a medium format camera, which was quite tricky because the image you see through the viewfinder is upside down and reversed. It was funny trying to direct it, asking my mother to turn left or right when what I was looking at was the complete opposite. For this one I took 12 pictures for each pose, but sometimes I take hundreds; the tiny details make all the difference. It’s amazing how you can always recognize the person in the end, ageing is an ever-changing process by way of which familiarity and permanence can be found.”
Petit Roi (My Brother)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Petit Roi (My Brother)

2009

Archival inkjet print

31 x 42.5 cm
“I understood I would have to be extremely organised, as each photo restaging would take weeks of preparation. I grouped the photographs I wanted to re-shoot according to location. I had to plan my schedule around the availability of my protagonists, to book flights and train tickets between London, Paris and the south of France, to make costumes and props; and most of all, always make sure that nothing would be missing on the day of the shoot. It was a crazy time. For Petit Roi, I used a disposable camera with a flash to get the ‘snap shot’ aesthetic. The original photo has turned yellow now, and I had to tint my version in Photoshop. Most of the photos I restage were taken in the 90s; my brother, sisters, and I were the last generation photographed with film cameras and to have family albums. Now everyone uses digital, and we don’t really print photos anymore. My project will probably have a different meaning and impact in a few years’ time because of this.”
Religieuse (Self-Portrait)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Religieuse (Self-Portrait)

2009

Archival inkjet print

27 x 42 cm
“This picture of me was taken in South America on Christmas Eve; I was so happy, it was the first year I was allowed to celebrate Christmas Eve with my parents. The cake was my favourite one and still is. To achieve the photographs I had chosen, and especially the ones that pictured me as a child, I had to innovate with the relation between model and photographer. Indeed, I became the model and my inexperienced family members had to become photographers, under my instructions. Not only was I in a slightly uncomfortable position trying to reconstruct my identity as a child (both physically and emotionally) but I also had to teach my family how to use digital and manual cameras, trigger and flash kits!”
In The Bath (My Mother And My Sister)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
In The Bath (My Mother And My Sister)

2009

Archival inkjet print

24.5 x 35 cm
“The initial inspiration for wanting to do this project came from a photograph of my brother and I as children, naked having a bath together in a small pink bucket. When trying to re-stage this photograph I realised it would be interpreted with pornographic connotations – which was absolutely not the aim of course! When I photographed my mother and my sister in the tub my mother was unhappy about it, especially about being naked. It took a while to talk her into doing it. My sister was really big in comparison to when she was 3, and in the original picture she has such a crazy smile. To recreate a natural smile like that took a lot of persuasion.”
Legos (Self-Portrait)
Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Legos (Self-Portrait)

2009

Archival inkjet print

27.5 x 42 cm
“Un-possible retour is a way back to childhood, even if it is just for a short instant. We were all children once, and that is something that is always current within us. My work can be a game as well: you can play with the similarities and differences. By creating these kinds of comparisons, or rather confrontations, I felt like I was exploring time in its oddest form – as if there was a dialogue between the past and the present moment. In South America the school photos are quite festive and look exotic with the beach backgrounds. The preparation for this photo was more difficult than expected: the backdrop is an image I found on the Internet and I couldn’t find the same Lego; it took hours to retouch it to get the colours to match. The expression as well was really difficult. I don’t have a studio and work in my flat, so it’s all done in a small space. I made a film about my process which you can see on the Saatchi Gallery website.”






Other artists in
NEWSPEAK: BRITISH ART NOW

Caroline Achaintre    Tasha Amini    Hurvin Anderson    Maurizio Anzeri    Jonathan Baldock    Anna Barriball    Steve Bishop    Karla Black    Lynette Yiadom Boakye    Pablo Bronstein    Alan Brooks    Peter Linde Busk    Carla Busuttil    Nicholas Byrne    Gareth Cadwallader    Juliana Cerqueira Leite    Spartacus Chetwynd    Steven Claydon    Clarisse d'Arcimoles    William Daniels    Matthew Darbyshire    Graham Durward    Tim Ellis    Tom Ellis    Richard Evans    Tessa Farmer    Marcus Foster    Robert Fry    Ximena Garrido-Lecca    Jaime Gili    Nick Goss    Luke Gottelier    Kate Groobey    Anthea Hamilton    Anne Hardy    Gabriel Hartley    Nicholas Hatfull    Iain Hetherington    Alexander Hoda    Sigrid Holmwood    Systems House    James Howard    Graham Hudson    Dean Hughes    Des Hughes    Mustafa Hulusi    Paul Johnson    Edward Kay    Idris Khan    Scott King    Ansel Krut     littlewhitehead    Alastair MacKinven    Goshka Macuga    Ryan Mosley    Rupert Norfolk    Arif Ozakca    Mark Pearson    Dan Perfect    Peter Peri    Olivia Plender    Henrijs Preiss    Ged Quinn    Clunie Reid    Barry Reigate    Luke Rudolf    Maaike Schoorel    Daniel Silver    David Brian Smith    Renee So    Fergal Stapleton    Clare Stephenson    Caragh Thuring    Phoebe Unwin    Donald Urquhart    Jonathan Wateridge    John Wynne    Toby Ziegler

Clarisse d'Arcimoles's BIOGRAPHY

Clarisse d'Arcimoles
Born in 1986, Paris
Lives and works in London



SOLO EXHIBITIONS


2011
My head is all over the place,Degree Art Gallery, London, UK.

2009
Photography, Les Ginettes, Paris.


GROUP EXHIBITIONS


2011
Family Matters, Alfred Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel

2010
Newspeak:British Art Now, The Saatchi Gallery, London
Many Years Later, Before Exhibition Gallery, Budapest, Hungary
Photographers’ Gallery: Fresh face and wild eyed 10, London.
20 Hoxton Gallery: “Rise and Fall”, Concrete and Glass 210, London.
Market estate Project: “The good old days”, London.
Changeling: Arts Bar, Camberwell, London.

2009
Pg Cert Photography: Group exhibition, Central Saint Martins, London.