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DEVAUX, Thomas (photographer)

Thomas Devaux

Photographer

Thomas-Devaux
Born in 1980 in Marcq-en-Barœul (North), Thomas Devaux lives and works in Paris. In 2011, he won the Bourse du Talent #46 (2011) competition, which was organized by Photographie.com, Nikon, Picto, Herez and Bibliothèque Nationale de France, that same year he was nominated for the “Prix Arte/Cutlog Art contemporain”

Devaux became interested in photography at a young age. He experimented simultaneously with several artistic expression mediums such as photography, experimental filmmaking and painting and collages while studying film. His current work lies somewhere between photography and paintings, which allows him to pursue his research on sacred themes, profanity and isolation.

In January 2012 filmmaker David Lynch exhibited his photos during the inauguration of his new Paris nightclub, Silencio. For Le Figaro, “his portraits of women taken at fashion shows and art openings, which are then digitally reworked, have a timeless grace that denounces with elegance the ephemeral character of beauty. … Madonnas damned for all eternity.” At the end of 2012 some of his photographs were included in several collections including those at the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BNF). His work was then exhibited in numerous countries like South Korea, China, France, Belgium, Russia and Hong Kong at the beginning of 2013. He was invited to present his work during the prestigious antiquity theatre soirées held during the last Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie d’Arles 2013.

In the words of Anne Biroleau-Lemagny, General Curator for 21st Century Contemporary Art Bibliothèque nationale de France (BNF), “Thomas Devaux is the author of several ambitious and complex series in which so many fundamental values like evolution in photography come into play. The photography’s index value cannot be denied. It is indeed a direct shot but a shooting immediately considered as a fragment of a future reconstruction.”. One of his ways of working involves taking simple photos of models at fashion shows in Paris, and Milan or even of regular visitors at the openings of contemporary art expositions like at the FIAC or at the Paris Photos. He uses them as raw materials by transforming them thanks to digital editing software and making them barely recognizable.

According to French newspaper L’Express, he uses fashion and the art world to “recompose a universe filled with symbols”. For Yann Datessen, a photography & crafts professor at the Sorbonne, Devaux’s characters are “ether beauties, flannel monstrosities, latescent Valkyries, patched-up ghosts that we sanctity and profane at the same time(…) Likes burned, worn-out, gone up in smoke, these new magnetic and electrified bodies have the boreal appearance of worrisome divinities. Spectral face, visage spectral, torsos with seven hands, female Cerberus, the bestial that Thomas evokes is filled with Dante-esque and Tararian metamorphoses…

His works plays on the textures and articulates on the body’s erasing and reconstruction. This is a style that is his very own. It exists between the sacred and the profane.

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