MEP : Like Songs : Photography and intimacy

MEP : Like Songs : Photography and intimacy

The Spring 2022 Year at the MEP is about Like with a funds ‘L’: all its doable joys and all its possible tribulations love in all its complexity and thriller and all the everyday poetry that really like can expose. The significant exhibition Love Tracks is a intentionally intimate proposition for rethinking the historical past of images, which includes some of its most celebrated names and landmark bodies of work. The exhibition has been conceived in relation to the outdated plan of selfmade songs compilations that (for a specified time at least) individuals supplied to, and exchanged with, their fans. Just one explanation why Appreciate Music brings this custom to intellect, albeit visually relatively than musically, is the perception of currently being immersed in the psychological landscapes of men and women we know (people we love) by way of the text, tips and emotions of people today that we do not. In picking a playlist of tunes that indicate a thing to us by singers that we admire, we are, in a way, featuring the thoughts expressed to our lovers as our very own. And in undertaking this pretty personal ‘curatorial’ perform and sharing it, we allow ourselves to say things that we rarely say, or say ourselves incredibly badly, through a type of appropriated poetry.

All of the artists in Enjoy Tunes and, without a doubt those people selected for the two Studios for this year, have tried out to seize anything of the essence of really like for themselves with the digital camera. They have, even so, completed this not only to clearly show what it usually means (or intended) to them personally, but also what it might signify for us as viewers. In each individual situation the intimacies unveiled depend not only on wonderful photographic artistry, but on the artists’ psychological generosity, the willingness to share with us not only their operate, but their life and enjoys.

Simon Baker
Director of the MEP and curator of the exhibition Adore Tunes


The team display Appreciate Tracks proposes a completely new eyesight of the record of pictures as a result of the prism of intimate interactions, like those between fans. Bringing together 14 collection by some of the most crucial photographers of the 20th and 21st centuries, it includes equally masterpieces from the MEP collection and loaned performs by essential present-day artists, quite a few of which will be exhibited in Europe for the very first time. As this sort of, Love Songs will demonstrate equally the significance of this matter to these doing work now as very well as its loaded history.

At the heart of the exhibition, and forming the twin details of departure for the record it proposes, are landmark collection by Nobuyoshi Araki and Nan Goldin. These seminal works will be exhibited in relation to these developed by other big historic figures which includes Larry Clark, Emmet Gowin, René Groebli, Hervé Guibert, Sally Mann and Alix Cléo Roubaud, as very well as collection by top modern day artists like JH Engström & Margot Wallard, Leigh Ledare, RongRong&inri, Collier Schorr, Hideka Tonomura and Lin Zhipeng (aka n° 223).

Drawing inspiration from Nan Goldin’s ‘Ballad’ (“The Ballad of Sexual Dependency”, 1986) Enjoy Music is conceived and organised like a musical compilation or blend tape provided to a lover, with Aspect A, the first half of the present, made up of series from 1950-1990 and Facet B, the next half from 1980 to now.

Using us by means of numerous different tales and situations photographed amongst different partners and situations, from the initial days of an affair by means of marriages, honeymoons, domestic bliss and the suffering of separation, even to the very last days shared concerning enjoys, the intimacies shared on film are unveiled in all their poetry and honesty.

Enjoy Tunes, nevertheless, is, higher than all, a proposition about the character of the images: the fact that although the camera is typically considered to be ‘objective’, it has commonly been made use of to history a little something about which we can agree on almost practically nothing, objectively speaking – one thing entirely subjective. We could not concur on what adore is, or how it is supposed to glance, how it will make us glimpse, or how it helps make us see, however it has been the topic of some of the most vital and relocating photographic operate of the previous century.

A further background of images

Like and intimacy have encouraged lots of excellent artists to make relocating and major photographic operates through the 20th and 21st centuries.

“Sentimental Journey” (1971) and “Winter Journey” (1989-90) by Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki, and “The Ballad of Sexual Dependency” (1973-1986) by American photographer Nan Goldin are among the the most persuasive examples of this observe.

Enjoy Music proposes situating these two sequence in the context of the work of other major photographers, all of whom have pushed the boundaries of representing intimacy inside of their practice. Comprising powerful bodies of do the job by both equally French and worldwide artists, from the 1950s to the current, the exhibition Adore Music sets out a wholly new heritage of pictures.

Love, a way of observing

Like Music is also a proposition about passionate interactions explored by the problem of the gaze. Even though appreciate could be viewed as as a sort of universal experience, the exhibition reveals how, in actuality it is inseparable from subjectivity, and the way which we ‘look’ and ‘see’ although in really like can fully transform the way in which we see the environment all around us. In “L’Œil de l’amour”, for illustration, René Groebli pictures his younger spouse, the moments of closeness they share, and invitations us as viewers to share a way of hunting that transforms everyday everyday living. By means of Emmet Gowin’s lens, by contrast, household and domestic everyday living are treated as treasured, pretty much sacred topics. Somewhere else, Sally Mann explores the strategies in which the loving gaze treats the overall body of a liked a single when it falters thanks to sickness, reflecting on thoughts of trust, kindness and acceptance. In his job Double Bind, Leigh Ledare juxtaposes his very own photographs of his ex-spouse Meghan Ledare-Fedderly with photos of her taken by her new spouse here the photographer thoughts the illustration of the very same model in the context of two unique intimate interactions. Depicting distinct means of loving, distinct sexual orientations, and distinct kinds of relationship, Adore Songs invites viewers to immerse them selves in a selection of own worlds, and experience different subjective visions of like.

When pictures fulfills intimacy

By concentrating on the way photographers produce functions of art motivated by their personal lives, Love Music seeks further to question the potentiality and restrictions of the photographic medium. It asks whether or not enjoy can ever actually be ‘captured’ on film or whether the camera’s ‘objectivity’ renders this difficult. But far more than this, what could these functions say about the position that the photographers give to us, the viewer? Though photographers can’t be accused of voyeurism when it arrives to their have lives, what outcome does this entry to intimacy have for the audience? The operates of Hervé Guibert and Alix Cléo Roubaud, in which we enter the non-public areas of the bedrooms or bogs that the artists occupy with their liked types, may possibly even make us really feel as if we are having the location of that intimate “other”, the photographer. With artist couples functioning alongside one another like JH Engström & Margot Wallard or RongRong&inri, the viewer, is once again put into the heart of their relationship, alternates, using the position initially of a person partner, then the other.


Appreciate Tracks : Photography and intimacy
March 30 ‒ August 21, 2022
MEP Maison Européenne de la Photographie
5/7 rue de Fourcy
75004 Paris France


On the situation of the exhibition Enjoy Songs, a catalogue is getting co- printed by the MEP and Atelier EXB. It consists of all the sequence offered in the exhibition as nicely as Lovesody by Motoyuki Daifu and Another Appreciate Tale by Karla Hiraldo Voleau, which are remaining offered throughout the very same interval in the Studio, the MEP’s exhibition room focused to emerging artists. Introductory essay by Simon Baker, director of the MEP and curator of the exhibition.

Appreciate Songs, Photographies de l’intime, posted by Atelier EXB. Texts in French, hardcover, format 19,5x27cm, 224 pages, 230 pictures, €45.