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MARCO DINIZ

Photographer

 

The Painter, Paris, France, 1998

Lilith # 2, Belo Horizonte, 2009

le rouge et le noir, Belo Horizonte, 2009

Washing the Sacre-coeur, Paris, France 1998

BIOGRAPHY

Marco Diniz, is a photographer, native of Brazil, who has lived many years between France, Belgium, Great Britain, Brazil, and the United States. Marco graduated with a diploma in French Language and Civilization from the Sorbonne in Paris. He is active in both the artistic and academic domains as a writer, translator, French professor and cultural commentator.

His writings and translations have appeared in various Brazilian and American publications and his photographic work has been exposed to the public in several exhibitions both in Brazil (Cultural Center UFMG, Gallery Café com Letras, the Audiovisual Reference Centre, and many others) and in New York (Ward Nasse Gallery, Soho).

He was also featured in numerous newspaper articles. Marco has been living and working in Montréal since 2011. He is presently completing a Master’s Degree in the Department of Art History and Cinematographic Studies at the University of Montreal and continues his reflection on, and practice of, the photographic arts.

Exhibitions:

Poor Banished Children of Eve
Café com Letras Art Gallery – Belo Horizonte/2009

Un regard sur Paris
Diamond Mall – Belo Horizonte/2009

A Grande Passagem
Solar da Baronesa – Santa Luzia/2009

The Mirror of the Soul
Ward-Nasse Galery – Soho New York/2004

A Grande Passagem
Acesita Foundation – Timoteo/2000-2001

No Bonfim da Vida
CRAV-Audio Visual Reference Center – Bonfim Chapel Cemetery – Belo Horizonte/1999

A Morte Suave
Centro Cultural UFMG – Belo Horizonte/1999

Arraial da Boa Viagem de Curral del Rey
Diamond Mall-Casa do Centenário-Banco Itaú- Serraria Souza Pinto – Belo Horizonte/1997

Un regard sur Paris
Festival de Inverno Ouro Preto – Acaso 85/1997

Un regard sur Paris
Café com Letras – Belo Horizonte/1997

Un regard sur Paris
Texas Café – Belo Horizonte/1997

Un regard sur Paris
Alliance Française – Belo Horizonte/1997

APPROACH

During the 1990s, I started my photographic explorations inspired by the great photography Masters of the French Humanist tradition, Édouard Boubat (1923-1999) and Robert Doisneau (1912-1994), through whose vision I discovered the city of Paris. Following in the footsteps of these post-war photographers, my first experimentations with the medium consisted of trying to capture the unique soul of the City of Lights where I lived for eight years. The imagery in my early Parisian, and then my Brazilian, work is intimately linked to my experience of being an attentive observer of the visual and cultural particularities of the urban landscape, of its inhabitants, and of the history that is imbedded in it. During my random wanderings and encounters, I captured a multitude of fleeting, unusual, and anecdotic moments: scenes of daily life which, framed carefully and photographed on black and white film that I processed using traditional darkroom techniques, reveal a nostalgic and poetic character that I associate with the photo-chemical process itself, as the image is gradually revealed. 

 

In recent years, my work focused on two central themes: death and femininity. I see my photographic approach as an opportunity to confront and tame two great enigmas of our existence: the “otherness” of mortality and the “otherness” of sexual identity, which, from a psychoanalytical perspective, correspond to our deepest primordial fears. Building on my frequent and intimate wanderings in cemeteries (the Père-Lachaise in Paris; Bonfim, the local cemetery of Belo Horizonte in Brazil), I tried in my series “Le grand passage” (1998-1999) to capture the troubling beauty of these transitory places, these “other spaces” or, in the words of Michel Foucault “Heterotopias,” where the living and the dead co-exist. The hundreds of photographs of tombstones, inscriptions, commemorative portraits and decorated mausoleums resulting from my explorations express an emphatic relation to these places of memory and mourning where our deepest desires, fears, and latent fantasies restlessly roam.

The tension between Eros and Thanatos that emerges from this corpus expresses itself more directly in a recent project, which explores the representation of female martyrs famous in Western history. These photographs feature studio scenes, freely staged, of historical or mythical female figures (Lilith, Joan of Arc, Anne Boleyn) whose sexual power has been stylized and amplified to highlight the threat they embody to the male identity. This series, under the sign of “Fears of the Male,” deals also with questions of transvestitism, homosexuality and oppression linked to gender, particularly through figures present in Brazilian culture (Geni) and the allusions I made to Stendhal’s “Le rouge et le noir.” Continuing my explorations of the extrinsic and intrinsic relationship of man and the “other” sex, I am now beginning to research the feminine identity as lived in Montreal, where the specter of the tragedy of the École Polytechnique Massacre still haunts people’s minds. Through photography, I endeavor to understand how much my masculine gaze, indeed that of a foreigner, can interpret of this horrible experience inscribed within the collective unconscious.

 

Although I have recently incorporated into my work digital photography and color, I still remain very attached to black and white photography and the traditional darkroom methods that allow me to create images directly from a negative, without the need for retouching or other manipulations. I intend to continue my research by investigating new procedures in the darkroom while experimenting with the technical variables of processing images. I want in particular to develop a reflection on the physicality of the film negative itself, as opposed to virtual imagery in the digital domain, and its manipulation until possible destruction. I intend to push my vision through new exploratory paths in order to energize and renew my creative process, and to further my reflection on the various dimensions within the practices and processes of the photographic arts.

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6483 Jalobert • Montreal, QC • Canada • Code Postal H1M 1L2 • Phone: 1-514-217-2917