A DIVE INTO A FABULOUS UNIVERSE
It takes some time to visually grasp the works of Baptiste Rabichon. Here, a colour photograph of flowers, and there cut on a black background, a white silhouette, with in the back a large decoration made with negatives and on either side, fragments of architecture that seem to have come straight out of an old encyclopedia. Baptiste Rabichon's "photographs" are this mysterious whole that amazes and questions.
His works plunge us into a parallel universe, a kind of fabulous country where everything is possible and which is beyond all logic. A universe where the visible meets the invisible and where perspective is constantly confronted with a two-dimensional space. We are immediately seduced by these strange compositions that upset our usual perception of things and world. To understand them, we must therefore take the time to decipher them.
THE COMBINATION OF DIFFERENT PHOTOGRAPHIC TECHNIQUES
After a BTS in oenology, Baptiste Rabichon entered the École des Beaux-Arts in Dijon and then in Lyon before entering the Beaux-arts in Paris in 2013. His interest in photography arose relatively early in his practice: Baptiste Rabichon began to explore the digital image by appropriating existing photographs and working with software to generate new and entirely fabricated images.
These first experiments are the ferment of his current work, which is the result of a subtle combination of patterns obtained from different photographic processes. Disregarding the dogmas and turf wars between digital and silver supporters, this young thirty-year-old unabashedly combines digital with analog imagery, as well as direct object projection, photograms and chemical prints. At the crossroads of painting, collage and photography, these mysterious photographic objects reveal a magical and organic universe in which the vegetal occupies a predominant place. Baptiste Rabichon tells us that he has been picking things since he was a child. In his small plastic suitcase, he accumulated all kinds of objects: pieces of plastic, dried flowers, pieces of wood. Today, he applies this same method to his work, mixing his own photographs with images taken from magazines or the Internet and with patterns that come directly from everyday life, such as flowers or objects found from the bottom of his pocket.
In addition to brilliantly combining the complexity of different photographic techniques, he manages to create a visual universe of his own, from which a great sense of poetry emerges. He thus overcomes the mechanical coldness of the photographic tools to reveal to us a colorful imagination, filled with flowers and fantastic silhouettes and thus make us penetrate into the prolific mind of an image gleaner.
From all these elements, he builds the first step of his "photography": these different patterns are scanned and assembled on software in order to create a meticulously composed negative. The second step takes place in the darkroom where the negative is projected via an enlarger onto a sheet of photo paper. He thus obtains the final photographic work: the photosensitive surface interprets the image composed on the computer and reveals a new one that is the result of the artist's interventions and of chance.
A TRIBUTE TO ART HISTORY
More than a clever mix of techniques, Baptiste Rabichon's work also refers to a vast visual and vernacular culture that transcends temporality. We can see the disturbing atmosphere of the Douanier-Rousseau’s colourful paintings, the pop aesthetics of Valérie Belin's photographs, the herbaria of Fox Talbot or the decorative micrographs of Laure Albin Guillot. The artist assumes these references, which constitute his entire "material library" from which he draws the many patterns that compose his works. Although present and identifiable, these references do not hinder the creativity and overflowing imagination of our young artist. On the contrary, they must be understood as a tribute and an inexhaustible source of inspiration, entirely at the service of an already well-constructed and recognisable aesthetic: that of Baptiste Rabichon.
He thus inaugurates a new way of creating that shakes up the codes of photography and abolishes the boundaries between techniques, media and ages.
82 boulevard Saint-Marcel, 2017
3 rue Quatrefages, 2018
20 rue de l’Yvette, 2017 Epreuve chromogène unique
Album IV, 2018 Epreuve chromogène unique
Album XI, 2018 Epreuve chromogène unique
Epreuve chromogène unique