Thursday, 26 February 2009

Jean-Luc Mylayne

Since 1976 Jean-Luc Mylayne has led a nomadic life, travelling for weeks and months on end in search of his photographic subjects - ordinary1 commonplace birds such as robins or sparrows and their avian relations.

Although Mylayne has, by necessity, a deep knowledge of ornithology his work bears little relation to the images of wildlife photographers. He does not pursue his prey with a telephoto lens, and is not searching for the exotic or the unusual.

Mylayne has produced fewer than 150 photographs during his life. Unsurprising given that each image, although recorded in a split second, in fact embodies months and months sometimes years - of patient work, watching and waiting, because artist and bird have to be intimately acquainted before the portrait can be captured.

Mylayne describes the bird as the "actor" to his "director'. And like a film director, every aspect of the scene has been carefully designed beforehand in his mind - the quality of light (often artificial), the time of day, the season, the composition of the landscape elements - leaving only the bird's presence to complete the picture. As the bird flies into the frame to assume its designated position, the shutter clicks, and the photograph - perhaps a year after conception-is finally finished.

The intense proximity of the artist to his subjects is clear when, in some photographs, you catch his image reflected back in the bird's eye. At other times, the bird is partially obscured by foliage, or caught in mid-flight, or tiny within the frame, so that you struggle to find it hidden within its natural habitat.

At heart, Jean-Luc Mylayne's is a conceptual art which addresses the philosophical and experiential phenomenon of time, as expressed in his absolute absorption with the details of nature. Mylayne's photography is about the quiet "discipline of experiencing the intervals" in contrast to the decisive moments so traditional to the photographic medium.(Artmag)

+Gladstone Gallery
+Krannert Art Museum and Kinkead Pavilion

1 comment:

Tristan Hutchinson said...

hey, the Mylayne images are very very wonderful - thank you for posting them. Something so unreal and placeless about them.

Also, thank you for your comments, yeah, those images are from a place called Bray, in Dublin. Looking out to sea over the cliffs. I love that landscape and have a huge connection with the sea - this vast sublime beast of sorts, but an unchanging and serene landscape.

Again, thanks for visiting and love your site. x

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