The figure of the idol has a mesmerizing and seductive power. The admiring crowd raises him or her to a higher rank, and turns the idol into an object of worship and contemplation. The Idol series shows the special relationship between these two parties, and focuses on its passionate and destructive nature.
Everybody needs to identify with somebody or something they regard as an ideal. In a way, the idol embodies what we would like to become and what we will never and cannot be. In this new series the crowd tries to get closer to the idol by loving him, by seducing him. But the line between admiration and covetousness is very easily crossed. Devotees seek to seize him, to possess him, until he is completely wiped out.
Nothing is eternal, nothing is unalterable, even ideals. The idol exists through the eyes of his admirers. They keep him alive but they can also destroy him.
My fascination for bronze busts was the starting point of this series. In spite of the apparent coldness of this material, its warm tones and the delicate features of the characters that are represented bring life to these inert blocks of metal. It is this alchemy that I wanted to reproduce on photographs. The Bronze series is then a collection of portraits evoking living busts.
The digital post-production process - models did not wear any make-up - reproduces the aesthetic qualities of bronze. The collars the models are wearing – that I designed and sew - reinforce the impression of rigidity, while the light on the eyes and faces brings life to these busts.
This series of portraits represents the main two sides of my conception of manliness : a combination of strength and fragility. It then made me think of Ancient Greece demigods – also called “Heroes” – who have this double identity: half-gods half-humans, both strong and vulnerable.
Yet, contrary to Ancient Greece representations of demigods, I did not want to idealize manliness or represent men who would have embodied contemporary standards of beauty. The men I chose were not professional models. They then all expressed very personal and authentic feelings when they found themselves in front of the camera for the first time. Their broad shoulders, tense trapezius and craned necks show their force while their busts, half-closed eyes and facial expressions convey a feeling of fragility, weakness, fallibility, dejection, or grace.
2011 - 2014
2012 - 2016
EYEMAZING Winter Issue 2012 - ARTE FOTOGRAFICO #633 - MUSEE MAGAZINE #7 Vol 2 - BOUM!BANG! - #PHOTOGRAPHY #7 - DOZE - BLCKDMNDS - FUBIZ - D LA REPUBLICA - DODHO #10 - WEGOTALENT - GENTE DI FOTOGRAFIA #58 - IMAGE IN PROGRESS #5 - BLUR #37 - THE JOURNAL #8 - ISSUE NO. 206 - ART PHOTO FEATURE - THE STEIDZ - THE PHOBLOGRAPHER - ARTE FOTOGRAFICO #638 - SHOOT ME #24 - BON TEMPS #6 - ARTIST UP…
2012 - 2013
M.I.D 19th Sep - 1st Dec 2012 (France) - LA NOVELA FESTIVAL 1st Oct - 31th Oct 2012 (France)
RECYCLART 2nd May 2013 (Belgium)
All images © Lionel Arnaudie 2011-2017 - All rights reserved