45 photographs, it’s better than nothing, but it is not enough to analyze the work of a photographer that has had so many prolix moments, intertwined with a few periods of silence. In this case, the current exhibition delves into an almost never-before seen series on nude photography.
Training since 1973, then becoming an assistant (Hara-Kiri) before being recognized by the famous portraits taken in Cannes in 1983 for Libération, as well as the invention of a new way of shooting portraits mixing flash and a slight blur, perfectly mastered. He invokes Mondrian and, always, Diane Arbus as references (the latter, the square format and the flash), that will guide the personality of writing that the media would exploit to a maximum until no longer seeing him. Unless it is the contrary, and Lambours travelled to far and distant lands. The animals, the landscapes, and the creation of a new creative health before turning, by the end of the 90’s, to Louis Vuittonian luxury, the tradition of a monogram and the sacred soccer ball. And before this, the creation of the agency Métis, a trip to the villa Kujoyama in Japan in 1992, and crowned with a Niépce Prize in 1994.
From travel photo-stories, Xavier Lambours photographs and surprises even with a long term subject on cycling (Vélolavie-2003).
There is “Always Lambours” during the famous Mois de la Photo in 2006, but there is also another trip, an inner trip that would turn him towards other creative inflexions. The celebrities, it’s something from the past, the press also, as he finds it “sanitized”.
He joined “Sigatures” Maison de photographes, in 2007 and produces “Xelles”, a nude exhibition for the Cité internationale in 2008, within the framework of the Mois de la photo. Not much is needed for this photographer of movement constantly in motion to question himself and art through nude photography. The influence is voluntarily revealed. The large formats are dedicated to Picasso, Bacon, Bellmer, Odilon Redon or Courbet’s origin of the world. Work on women’s bodies in large format will be placed next to cinema stars, politicians, writers…, some other “self portraits” that Xavier Lambours loves to confront with animals. Alongside the landscapes they join the past magical universes from the artist.
A catalogue accompanies the exhibition entitled “XL” featuring a text by Brigitte Paulino-Netto.
Institut de France
Académie des Beaux Arts
29 juin – 25septembre 2011
Maison Européenne de la Photographie
5 /7 rue de Fourcy
+33 (0)1 44 78 75 00
La Maison d’été
120 pages 220 × 224mm