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Exposition : François Prost

The commercial film production company Superette, based in Paris (10e), hosts until November 16 2018 the exhibition "Photo Stories" by François Prost, an independent Lyon photographer 38 years attached to serial production, often focused on popular culture, architecture and social appearances.

Graphic designer based in Paris, François Prost already has a full resume: Galeries Lafayette, Credit Agricole, Aides, Lacoste or Sephora, have indeed appealed to his creative qualities, including typography. Five years ago he decided to turn to photography. In his goal: a desire for freedom.

For his first monographic exhibition, François Prost chose to show four series made between 2013 and 2017, methodical and analytical; an approach that he describes as reassuring since it is similar to the one he applies in his graphic design practice. So After party (2014), the first of four collections presented, lists about 100 Belgian and French nightclubs immortalized during the day. Old farmhouse, warehouse, prefabricated, sometimes overloaded with phantasmagorical decorations, come alive in the evening and lose their beauty once the sun has risen. A significant inventory of facades in peri-urban or rural environment, awarded by the Fidal Youth Photography Award in 2015.

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In the same vein, Paris Syndrome, made in 2017, questions the suburbs of the city of Hangzhou (China), where a replica of Paris called Tiandu Cheng takes place since 10 years on a territory of 1 900 hectares. Eiffel Tower, Haussmann buildings, Garden of Versailles, all the archetypes of the City of Light are mixed in all directions. Through a play of the seven differences - between the original subject and the copy photographed from the same angle - the visitor points out the similarities between urban reality and cardboard decor. "Fortunately it's the people who make the place and not the architecture", tempers François Prost, whose visit has shown that beyond the architectural appearance live city dwellers who have appropriated the place.

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Less talking but more aesthetic, the compilation of thirty tricks conceived in 2014, titled Suburb, captures the great sets of Ile-de-France 1960 years. Among them, the Cloud Towers of the city Pablo Picasso in Nanterre (92), close to the Defense, now threatened with destruction in favor of hotels and corporate headquarters; or the city Curial-Cambrai (19e) suffering from impoverishment that breeds insecurity and violence. With an aerial framing, François Prost detaches structures from their geographical context and gives them back their full force.

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In a more comic register this time the series At the Champs-Elysées II (2017), as more than 300 000 people roam every day, is taking tourists from all over the world in the act of running down the bus. Second part of a pictorial trilogy, At the Champs-Elysées II focuses on holidaymakers coming down from their bus, ready to immortalize the Arc de Triomphe in ten minutes. A composition that mixes individuals and colorful graphics of their vehicle.

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Like the pieces of a puzzle, each series reveals a unique tragicomic atmosphere.

Exhibition "Photo Stories" by François Prost, at the Superette (10e) until 16 November 2018

To learn more, visit François Prost's website

Photographs: François Prost

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