Xavier Dumoulin, photographer of the emergency

You only have to look at Xavier Dumoulin 's photography to realize that he is an aficionado of wide open spaces. But the view that this young man carries of these seaside or mountain landscapes is one of concern: light pollution, climate change… his work reveals, in a poetic way, a growing dichotomy between man and his environment. With the intention of provoking some thought from the viewer: «If just one of my photographs, one day, opens the eyes of only one person, all of this will not have been futile. » says he.
Born in 1974, Xavier Dumoulin, lives and works in Pau, at the foot of the Pyrenees mountains and not far from the Atlantic Ocean. His work is regularly exhibited in Paris galleries and has received several awards: finalist in 2016 Bourse du talent for his 'Limites' series, Prix du jury Hiiibrand Photography (China), Fubiz prize and laureate Photocollection in 2012…

Can you tell us about your journey in the photography world?

I broke into photography through a personal artistic approach. Initially it was a means to express myself after moving and the change of life that went with. I subsequently won a couple of competitions which was reassuring and today I am lucky enough to take photos commissioned by architects and still continue my artistic endeavours.

How did your artistic work develop?

In the beginning photography was a way to observe the world. The Passager de la nuit (Night Passenger ) series was the first step towards a more critical point of view and a way to express social and environmental problems which I found concerning. The series La Place de l'Homme is a project that I have been developing for the last 10 years: I draw attention to the effects of man in the environment revealing his place in society.

How would you define this work: the subject as well how it's being dealt with?

My work is first and foremost a means of expression, a message to incite awareness of the urgency of the present day. I favoured symbolism and a dream-like approach over shocking images to deliver a strong message to try and get people thinking.

Do you have to be environmentally aware to be able to appreciate your photos?

If these photographs only appealed to the converted, the message I'm delivering would be limited and that frustrating. The name of the game is to invoke a reaction with the widest possible audience. If just one of my photographs, one day, opens the eyes of only one person, all of this will not have been futile.

What in your opinion constitutes a good photograph?

A good photograph should have a point to it and its form should drive the message home.

Which photographers or artists have had the greatest influence on you?

I've flicked through Nadav Kander's book on the Yang Tse Kiang dozens of times. The thread, the integration of light, what the photos tell us about China, the poetry in my opinion make this a complete work and a model of perfection.

Where can we see your work?

A selection of prints from the 'Incandescences' series will be presented by Artistics, the online gallery, at Fotofever Paris 2018 , from 8 to 11 November at the Carrousel du Louvre. Those who are unable to go can view my work on the gallery's site.

Tell us about this series: 'Incandescences'.

I wanted to underline the dichotomy which exists, and in fact more and more, between man and nature. Symbolically, I found it interesting to represent human presence in the form of fire, a lava spill in the midst of wonderful countryside by the light of the full moon.

What's your next project?

The 'Incandescences' series (2013) has to do with the causes of global warming. The 'Limites' series attempts to illustrate the consequences on the landscape. My next work will try and bring together causes and consequences in the same series, between the effects of global warming and the results of excessive consumerism.

What is your definition of luxury?

Luxury is being able to live happily.

The little luxury you couldn't do without?

Hiking shoes...
Novembre 2018