28
Feb
12

F.X. Combes : ‘Building Series’ (Screen Capture Photographs)

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The portrayal of urban space is at the heart of FX Combes’ work. His series ‘Buildings’, continues along these lines. How do you portray the City? The City in its ultimate truth, bare, naked. According to the artist, by starting with the ordinariness of the basic building in mind. With the most traditional vision, the least cluttered possible, of a building garnered in a few basic lines. Then, this ordinariness is reorganized, structured, given shape and colour, assigned order, rhythm and meaning, and restored in the layers of a fixed time – past, present, and future piled together. In a way that the urban concept in itself emerges from the raw material; The purest, and most refined City from the concrete building…

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‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
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‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
::

::
‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
::

::
‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
::

::
‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
::

::
‘untitled – buildings series’
inkjet print on textured paper
140 x 120 cm
2009
::

In practice, F.X. Combes begins by taking photos of buildings, that he then photographs again through the screen of his computer, in order to attain the desired distance between what is real and what is suggested without using photo retouching software. In this way, he obtains a series of nearly identical pictures of the same pattern, nearly being the key word. These successive screen captures create each time micro differences in shape, the tiniest shifts in light. And, as a result, there are so many occurrences of the unpredictable that the artist then takes great care to systematize either through a process of multiplication – juxtaposition of the images (the horizontal series) or through a process of reconstruction using a fragment, an imaginary building or an ideal City (the vertical series).

Actually, what is the building really behind its undecipherable facade, its impenetrable walls and blind windows? What is the City in its intimate nature and beyond its immediate materialisation? Originally it was the foremost human meeting place. Man built the city to live there, to thrive and prosper there. But in its arrogant proliferation the city ended up rejecting man into an anonymity that is a form of denial. The realisation of this presence/absence of man in the city that he himself made is one of the issues that is at stake in these images. The City according to FX Combes is most certainly an inhabited place but by a being who, after having left a sign of his time spent there, finds himself from then on in the process of fading out completely.

This bluish trembling, this nearly vibrating halo that enshrouds the buildings rising into their metaphysical sky – each of these effects is evidence of this gradual disappearance, this evanescence in progress. The succession of layers of the present and of past generations who lived there is still visible, virtually through chance circumstances that are less and less discernible, but the City has already transformed into another condition of its own location. Beyond the man who made it, the City remains and endures, and pulls itself up to the pinnacle of its definitive self. The City approaches more and more surely the ideal of Platonism. Underneath the deceptive ordinariness of buildings, the fundamental archetype is revealed. – [Extract : from press release by Vincent Gracy - NextLevel Galerie]

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F.X. Combes : Website

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2 Responses to “F.X. Combes : ‘Building Series’ (Screen Capture Photographs)”


  1. 1 mrbenblue
    February 28, 2012 at 5:23 am

    Cool. Reminds me of Russian artist, Alexei VassIliev: http://www.galeriebluesquare.com/artist/26/Alexe-Vassiliev

  2. February 28, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    this series made me think of Hiroshi Sugimoto’s blurred architecture, but these are more abstracted architectural impressions, wonderfully graphically presented … inspiring!


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