2018 #8


by Marie Clerel

Using found materials and everyday objects, Marie prints her latest series Dogears with a rare process called cyanotype, resulting in an abstract but poetic combination of blue and white layered forms.


Sans Titre (Plis) was my first cyanotype series; it’s an inventory of abstract shapes created from pieces of paper that had spent some time in the bottom of bags. I work from my immediate environment using objects that everyone can relate to, and I like that the shapes in my work are not consciously constructed but are instead a consequence of involuntary gestures. Dog Ears is a progression from that first series, but here the white shapes are more dominant. The work deals with forgetting; the white shapes represent a pause both in the books that I’ve read and a visual pause for the viewer through the cyanotype.


What you see as abstract images come from simple and concrete gestures. One can read my work multiple times; first you see white shapes as pure abstraction, but after reading the titles you understand where these shapes comes from – something that everyone can relate to in the context of the ordinary. I appreciate the paradox between abstraction and more poetic ideas.


I discovered the cyanotype process as a result of wanting to record the light that appeared on my studio walls. I try to avoid being too didactic and cyanotypes allow me to work with the photographic medium without being too figurative. I like that I don’t need a darkroom or any kind of camera; there is both an instantaneity and a tangible dimension to the process. It is interesting that I am also dependent on the weather; working exclusively with natural light, the shade of blue ultimately reflects the amount of sunlight that day.


The use of alternative processes is not new, but I feel part of a growing family of young artists looking for new ways to work with photography. We need to acknowledge the fact that we live in a visually saturated society, and where possible, we should strive to provide a considered response to question the medium. The cyanotypes I make are irreproducible which somehow contradicts the economy of images today. Despite the fact that modern cameras allow us to make ‘perfect’ images instantly, I consciously choose to use a process that generates imperfections.

Read more (1 min read)

83 The incident now will fold like the pea under the twenty mattresses

83 The incident now will fold like the pea under the twenty mattresses

88 Brigitte Lahaie had haunted me so much

123 Fortunately my thoughts took a new turn

213 He agrees to find the childs body

213 He agrees to find the childs body

714 More of thirty I think

714 More of thirty I think

Marie Clerel

Paris, FR


Marie Clerel

Paris, FR

Marie Clerel (b. 1988, France) finds poetry in everyday life. Inspired by sunlight projected onto her studio wall, she was drawn towards “contactless” mediums such as the cyanotype. The bold, blue colour of the photographic paper has become a signature of her images. Deftly folding, exposing and manipulating, real and intangible objects are represented by abstract shapes and textures. Clerel has exhibited her unique rejuvenation of 19th Century methods throughout Europe. She obtained her Diplôme National Suspérieur D'expression Plastique, National School of Fine Arts in Lyon, where she received special praise for her unique body of work.

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