Sept 12, 2018

Courtesy Daniel Szalai

Paris Photo selects each year one image to represent the Fair and the current artistic trends and diverse issues that push the boundaries of photography today.

This year, our official fair image is Mickalene Thomas’s Calder Series #2, 2013 © Mickalene Thomas Courtesy Galerie Nathalie Obadia, Paris / Brussels

Mickalene Thomas, born in 1971 in Camden (New Jersey), lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Mickalene Thomas sublimates a contemporary vision of the Afro-American woman, which she re-contextualizes in staged domestic scenes permeated with the spirit of the 60’s and 70’s. Transcending aesthetic influences and evoking the invisibility of black bodies in a subjective art history, Mickalene Thomas’ works consist of a political commitment of positioning the black American woman as the central subject at the heart of her paintings and photographs. The figure occupies the integrality of the space to affirm itself with panache as one of the essential constituents of American society. As a complement to the rigorously framed postures, the artist gives these women a force of seduction and attraction that is accomplished through an extremely precise formal approach: the complex mastery of rhythm, form, color and pattern lends to the establishment of a space which enables the immediate deconstruction of the possibilities of reality.

The selected work is a poignant statement congruent with the themes that will be addressed at this year’s edition: pluridisciplinary practices and perspectives in image-based art, the relationship between the ‘real’ and the image, representations of women and feminism in popular culture. It is also a coherent choice this year in light of Paris Photo’s unique collaboration with the French Ministry of Culture for a special programme honouring women in photography in a unique parcours created by Fannie Escoulen independent curator, highlighting the work of female artists and their contribution and representation in the History of the medium.

Image :© MICKALENE THOMAS Calder Series #2, 2013 Color photograph. Courtesy of the artist & Galerie Nathalie Obadia, Paris / Brussels

Le jury est composé de Sylvain Bailly, directeur des affaires culturelles de SNCF Gares & Connexions ; Tatyana Franck, directrice du musée de l'Élysée de Lausanne ; Vincent Marcilhacy, directeur de Picto Foundation ; Léopold Meyer, collectionneur ; Robert Morat, galeriste ; SMITH, artiste ; Christoph Wiesner, directeur artistique de Paris Photo.

Parmi les lauréats de la Carte Blanche, Simon Lehner a été sélectionné par la Maison Ruinart comme lauréat du premier Prix de la Maison Ruinart, organisé avec le soutien de Picto Foundation. Ce prix, accompagné d’une dotation de 5 000 €, permet à l’artiste de donner sa vision photographique de la Maison Ruinart, à l’occasion d’une commande réalisé dans les vignobles, les installations et les caves de la Maison à Reims. Simon Lehner a été remarqué pour sa personnalité, son travail de la lumière et son originalité. Ses créations seront exposées dans le restaurant VIP de Paris Photo.