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CARRÉ BLANC The series was an immediate success when first shown in 2005. Eric Marrian was clearly recognized as being original in the way he portrays the body and deals with the universal but difficult genre of nude photography. 'Carré Blanc' represents a new approach, which is sometimes endearing, always sharp and exacting, and designed to amuse. Marrian looks with the eye of the architect and celebrates the science of volumes and the geometry of bodies for the eye of a modern-day public that knows no taboos. Above all, he shows a new body, shaped by the lens, a body he sees and reveals like the parts of a large puzzle and approaches like a playground; a body that is never shown in its entirety but in segments, fragmented, as if hewn from stone and usually pale in complexion. In short, a ludic, sculptural, exalted and self-sufficient body. Part of the charm of ‘Carré Blanc’ derives from the fact that the series constitutes a humorous and poetic grammar of sensual elements, with imaginary landscapes and unexpected reliefs. They describe a region that is both familiar and untrodden. With Marrian the female body, the photographic subject par excellence, is stripped of eroticism. It is tangible but pared down to all but the essentials. He chooses the game and the allegory, he celebrates the metaphors of the flesh. There is nothing obscene about exploring a body which has been taken apart and put together again, which with its intellectual games, charades and spiritual landscapes sometimes closely resembles the world of the surrealists. It is also a spiritualized body, which hints at the presence of things and the spirit of the work behind the physical frame. The photographs give the woman’s body the sort of depth, density and texture that is rare with nude photographers. Curves which escape and spill out into melodies or into interrupted arabesques and broken lines, studies of curvatures and creases, hands and forearms folded over supple flesh, etc. Replete with nooks and angles, sections and perspectives, this body follows some secret geometric pattern. We suspect it is a clever surveyor, disguised as a photographer, who has brought to life this dismembered and yet complete body, someone who favours the fragment over the whole, someone with an eye for detail, even for the smallest piece of skin or muscle, the tiniest hair, elevated to a sort of absurd poetry.
There is no lack of spirit in these limbs! That is what ‘Carré Blanc’ is about: nudity in which the grammar of the body transcends sexual nudity, nudity which prompts reflection and celebrates the metamorphoses of body and soul.
ERIC MARRIAN born in 1959, is an architect, who at the beginning of the new millennium decided to return to his old love, photography. A discipline he used to hesitate about making his primary profession, when he was still in architecture school. In 2003 he began to work on several series about the marine city Saint Malo in France. Later on he switched to studio work and things moved on quickly: He won the BIEVRES competition, was repeatedly published in photography magazines and was invited by the organizers of the ‘Le Salon des Artistes Français’ to show his works. At the end of 2005 he started to work on the “Carré Blanc” series. In 2006 the first images of this series received the award of the European Festival of Nude Photography in Arles, France. His works are highly regarded by audiences and critics, have been featured in numerous exhibitions and have conquered the cultural centers of Paris, Venice and even Moscow, with its elegance and sophistication.
He was awarded international premiums from the ‘Association des Artistes Français‘, and also became a winner of scholarships from the Kodak-portra and Leica-procirep. As time progressed, he began to take an idiosyncratic look at the fashion world and his first editorials appeared in 2010. In 2011 however - for the first time in a long while - he began a new coloured series called “Javel”. This series proposes an original approach to colours. The photos were taken on Polaroid material and were manually edited in a complex chemical process. Eric Marrian`s images are regularly published all over the world by the artistic press and the Lifestyle Magazines: Elle (Russia), Réponses Photo (France), The Photographer’s Companion (China), Photo + (Korea), Digital Photo (Russia), Playboy (Russia), The Opera (Germany),…