Alexandre Christiaens (1962)
Fleeting wanderings of a traveler overwhelmed by the world : this is how Alexandre Christiaens describes his photographic work. Travels to far-off destinations is the essential condition of Christiaens’ inspiration and creation: whether to Romania, Estonia or Russia, or to India, Brazil, Chile, Turkey or China or to the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, it always comes down to his inexhaustible urge of going to see. To question the world’s structure, track its presence, plumb its absences, record its vibrations. To fragment time and to open oneself up like a diaphragm. To allow light to be imprinted upon oneself. What emerges from his different series (industrial landscapes, caves, seafronts, or seascapes, among others) are connections that weave together a personal and coherent sense of the world. For Alexandre Christiaens, travel and photography are inextricably linked: in the photographical act of distancing oneself from his object, something becomes activated that sharpens our acuity and heightens the attention we bring to the world outside, along with a concomitant realignment of our inner consciousness. One must be outside to properly reflect upon and put into form and movement what is inside. In this sense, Christiaens’ photographs speak to us of the outside worlds into which he ventures as much as, intimately, of his own inner world.
François de Coninck