François Ollivier

The photographer François Ollivier, born in southern France, currently lives and works in Montreal. Through not only genuine but sometimes formally constructed compositions, he brings meaning to the ordinary. 

Furthermore, Ollivier’s methodology centers around fate and patience. His lens constantly challenges our understanding of the surroundings, or more precisely, of what remains in the world around us. And more than that, his work reflects on and re-examines the relationship with the time, and expects that from a viewer.

In his series of photographs ‘Memory Lapses’, François Ollivier creates sculptures that erase themselves through the flash of a camera. He creates his temporary installations in places that hold great importance to him. Those locations, heavy with nostalgia, connect deeply to Ollivier’s emotional history. They span from Montréal to Roquebrune Sur Argens and the coastline of Portugal. 

Although the sculptures look as if they have been removed from the photographs — they haven’t. They actually vanish after being exposed to a bright light of a flash. These subtractions alter the landscape of the image and distort our perception, much like time and distance.

‘The sculpture erases itself in the process. It’s not photoshopped out. It’s actual subtraction by light. The light of the flash makes it so white, that there is no data anymore in that part of the image. It’s gone. Burnt out.’

For François Ollivier, timing plays an important role too. For example in Memory Lapses, he purposefully hides the fact of using the flash. Because of that, the sculptures were captured at sunset, when the daylight can be seen.




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