Arles 2012: Erwan Morère
Erwan Morère - ENSP 2010
Très loin à l'Est, il y a l'Ouest / 2 (Far to the East, There is the West)
Coming across a photograph by Erwan Morère is no light matter. Too bad, it’s too late. There you are – that’s it You know how it is, the feeling that you’ve been grabbed as you pass by – you’re hooked, carried away, and you say to yourself that if you get off while the thing’s moving, you’re going to take a bad fall. So don’t look at these photos, unless you’re prepared to go on the journey, prepared to share Erwan’s vision of those wide open spaces. The vastness of those semi-deserted territories, mainly in the north in this series, the far north – places where, far to the east, it’s the west, and vice-versa: Mongolia, Iceland, Canada – places he crossed, over and over again, in trains or planes or by hitch-hiking. We become his travelling companion. By the side of the road, even when after waiting for six hours, Erwan points out some houses over there in the distance, some men and animals, perhaps even a circus. But most of the time we share in the ebb and flow, this vortex that blurs all vision, a kind of meditation on the move. He’s talking about territory; he’s also saying that trains, motor cars, movement itself, are also territories. Nothing is calculated, there’s no research. He goes off, and it’s all improvisation. But why the north, and snow so often? Because Erwan has a family. And that family comes from a country in the north of Europe. His grandfather was called Christer Strömholm, and his father Anders Petersen. That’s the black and white of it. Say no more. That’s the way it is. A way of seeing, a certain abstraction. Those great stretches of white, of black, of grey, that caress if they don’t sting. And then there’s a hint of Hiroshi Sugimoto. But show me a photographer of this sort that doesn’t have a touch of Hiroshi Sugimoto. The problem with Erwan Morère’s photography is that once you’re grabbed and hooked and carried away, you don’t really feel inclined to get away – he takes you off into territories you’ve never seen before.
Jean-Luc Amand Fournier, curator and teacher for the ENSP
Born in 1985 in France. Lives and works in Avignon. After graduate studies in Sociology of Art and Cultural Anthropology in Paris, Erwan Morère went to the French École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie (ENSP), in Arles. In the course of those three years at ENSP, he developed a personal photographic style, largely composed of shots taken in the United States, Canada, and Iceland. After his post-graduate diploma in 2010, he had a number of one-person exhibitions, before leaving on an expedition from Malaysia to Estonia by land. He continued to produce photographs during this trip, and they will be displayed from April 2012 in a series of five exhibitions in Uruguay with the photographer Pablo Guidali. This series of exhibitions is organised by the Uruguayan Ministry of Culture, who have awarded the two photographers first prize in the Fundos Concursables scholarship. At the Rencontres d’Arles, Erwan Morère will be exhibiting a large body of photographs that give a good idea of his personal approach and of his development as a photographer.