In conjunction with Photo Saint Germain, Catherine and André Hug Gallery present the second solo exhibition by Kourtney Roy, whose self-portraits plunge us into an imaginary universe where remnants of the past merge with the contemporary performance of the artist. In each of her photographs, we find her, most often alone, or rather inscribed in a unique sensation which has little to do with the feeling of isolation, for it presupposes the presence of a memory. Each photograph represents a temporal meeting that reveals an ephemeral instant marked by the precise encounter of action with place.
Kourtney Roy makes a mark of her presence in the world in the interval of an illusion. Like a silver screen heroine, her body becomes one with the décor, whether by crawling on the ground or jumping behind an innocuous shrub. The settings and the spaces are sources of inspiration underlining a poetics of the banal and the quotidian. Forgotten and empty places often exude a sense of calm or of strangeness, a space-time which permits the artist to express herself and to lose herself in the literal or figurative sense much like the heroes of Terence Malick’s film Badlands. An exquisite image is produced, which at first seems a safe harbour, a place of grace or of liberty, but which progressively shimmers and falters under the punishing rays of the sun to reveal an inescapable truth: the deserted wilds are harsh and empty of hope for those in search of solitude.
By traversing Route 66 – the Mother Road, as it is known in America – she captures the forgotten landscape of mythic America: “If you go to the West, take my way…”, as sung by Nat King Cole. This is the West that stirs up our nostalgia for the “road” of Easy Rider, Thelma and Louise and Baghdad Café.