Photographing Isolation and Solitude on an Island in the Aegean Sea
In his new series, Clément Chapillon explores the notion of geographical and mental isolation through an island space in the Aegean Sea. If the word "isolated" literally means "shaped like an island", we can rightly ask ourselves what form do the time, the other, beliefs and the imaginary take in this finite world bordered by the infinite.
For the past twenty years, Clément Chapillon has been regularly visiting the island of Amorgos, located in the heart of the Greek archipelago of the Cyclades. With his Plaubel Makina 67 (medium format analog camera), he has put together a narrative in images that is both documentary and metaphorical about the contradictory feelings provoked by the insularity of this rocky, arid and wild territory.
The series is named from a passage of "Greece today" (« La France d’aujourd’hui ») by the French archaeologist and writer Gaston Deschamps, published in 1892 and whose work is partly devoted to Amorgos. In this travelogue, he describes the landscapes, the inhabitants’ life, the local traditions but also his work on the spot and his feelings, in a lyrical and old-fashioned style. These words echoed the feelings of the photographer who, from a single page, collected fragments of text that made sense to him. By a work of erasure, he voluntarily erased the major part to let appear only words and pieces of sentences used as palimpsest to try to reproduce island sensations.
Les Rochers Fauves is published by Dunes Editions.