Nicole Depergola and Catherine Canac-Marquis, our readers picks #343, both draw onirism in daily life to better study the world. Simultaneously direct and realist, their images push back the limits of documentary photography and create new narratives.
Nicole Depergola fell in love with street photography when she was 18 years old, inspired by her uncle’s photography. Based in the south of Italy, “in a place blessed with a beautiful seaside, refreshing wind and warm colours”, she captures the most minute details of her environment. “My style has evolved since then, and my current approach is the result of new ways of expressing myself, combining antithetical concepts – human people and objects – to create new original fusions that encapsulate the emotions I feel in the moment”, she confides. Tinted with pastel tones, her images feature anonymous characters, mysterious and terribly familiar figures. Beings placed in a minimal setting, or facing dreamlike landscapes, as if to invite the viewer to immerse themself in this other world. “The main themes I explore are fragility and nostalgia, in a still or a slow-paced environment. I often use analogue photography to make that dramatic feeling come to life” the artist tells us. Influenced by Elina Brotherus, Man Ray, but also Virginia Mori, an Italian illustrator, as well as the films of Yorgos Lanthimos and the fictional characters of Xavier Dolan, Nicole Depergola weaves intricate tales. Whimsical stories illuminated by soft summer light and imbued with charming romanticism.
© Nicole Depergola
Born in Canada, photographer Catherine Canac-Marquis has been training her eye for several years in Long Beach, California. As an experienced traveller, it was during her many escapades that the camera became her best ally. “The medium has allowed me to transpose my states of mind to the four corners of the country, during long moments of solitude”, says the artist. Her work focuses on environmental issues, the rise of the renewable energy industry and its impact on the preservation of natural habitats. While California has adopted a law that requires it to reach 100% renewable energy by 2045, new infrastructures are needed to meet the demand that paradoxically threaten natural parks. “Millions of acres of protected areas – from the iconic Joshua Tree National Park to the remote Mojave Desert – are currently under threat from the pressure of the solar energy lobby”, the photographer adds. With Sungazing, Catherine Canac-Marquis’ studies the impact of the transition to solar energy. She presents a lyrical but rigorous vision of the natural phenomenon and its exploitation in the Californian desert. “Punctuated by allusions to the sun, my images oscillate between organisms adapted to desert habitats, the visible consequences of global warming, and infrastructures that allow for the production of clean, renewable energy”, says the photographer. A story between dream and realism, “as the artist Paul Klee so aptly put it, ‘One eye sees, the other feels’”, she concludes.
© Catherine Canac-Marquis
Cover picture: © Nicole Depergola