16 October 2019 – 13 April 2020
Tosani’s Spoons series (1988), offers analogies with the space designed by Monet to host his Water Lilies decorative scheme, and with this ovoid entrance hall in particular.
Patrick Tosani, "H", 1988
Cibachrome photograph, 182 x 120 cm
Courtesy Galerie In Situ - fabienne leclerc, Paris. © ADAGP, Paris 2019
The issue of scale, the theme of reflections, the series structure, and lastly the relationship created with the subject in the act of photography, all present parallels between Tosani’s work and Monet’s late painting. Taking the simple shape of the spoon, the photographer analyses the phenomenon of vision, just as Monet probed the motif of water in his pond: “I describe the thing in very concrete terms because what interests me is its metaphorical and visual scope. Visually, this is no longer about either food or feeding, but pure light. This oval captures, receives, attracts and stores light, then redirects it back at us, transmits and returns it to us like a diffuse, reflective mirror.” The monumental treatment of the theme draws the viewer into a relationship of immersion and absorption, reminiscent of the experience of seeing the Water Lilies in situ: “the observer looking at the image should be contained in the oval of the spoon due to the concave shape of the object, its enveloping and possibly protective appearance, its bright sheen, and its reflection. The viewer embraces the image with their entire body and feels physically captured and swallowed up by the object.”
For over forty years, Patrick Tosani has been exploring the possibilities offered by the photographic process. He initially studied architecture in Paris, but started developing his approach to photography in 1974. In the early 1980s, he made his mark by blazing a unique trail which challenges reality and transforms it into a physical and meditative experience.