Humazooics – Intent


History :

The project Humazooics was created in 2000. It was decided, at that point, that it would consist of three parts, such as explained below, and would end in 2020. Therefore, in twenty year’s time, had to be built a work that would tally with the philosophical and photographic principles which were defined then.

Lexicon :

Humazooics is a neologism that represents my whole photographic work.

It is composed of the adjective “human”, a value that is the core of my artistic and philosophic interest.

“Zoo” was chosen to express a confusion, which only exists to all appearances.

The last element, “ics”, suggests a mosaic made of heterogeneous elements which should produce an implicit coherence.

The structure :

Humazooics appears like a three-headed living organism, a sort of artistic Cerberus in which the three entities converse to build up a language that continuously evolves.

Nature of Things reflects the philosophical materialism of Lucretius. It is about the Inanimate.

Nature of Beings is dedicated to the Living.

Nature of Art, through images, invites to a reflection about the means of artistic creation.

Philosophical choices :

The ways we behave, consume, speak, consider others, see the world or what we expect when we die are all dictated by philosophical options that have withstood the passage of centuries.

Humazooics reflects the materialistic philosophy, whose greatest representatives are Leucippus, Democritus, Epicurus, Lucretius. More recent Gassendi, D’Holbach, Diderot, Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt and Michel Onfray can be added to the list.

Following not only these thinkers but also the basic principles of Physics, I believe that all matter is made of a finite number of atoms, whose infinite and random combinations compose all things. Mendeleev’s periodic table of elements and its tabular display of the existing – or discovered – chemical elements arranged by atomic and electron configuration is a matching reference to illustrate Humazooics.

Humazooics claims to be symbiotic and syncretic.

At the heart of the Humazooics project is the dialectical tension between order and disorder, construction and entropy, structure and chaos. Humazooics admittedly fits in a systems theory that is connected to an artistic ground. However, it is not constrained in a closed system, but rather in a living organism which hosts all possible exchanges, alterations and attractions. Each photography thereby becomes a sort of electron which can match, according to affinities to define – or better, to invent – with other particles to form a brief set. This attraction is unnecessary though, so likely to dissolve again in the whole of Humazooics.

Coincidence, which has a key role in the structuring of the universe, may also intervene in the attractions that happen inside Humazooics.

In order to reach that result, after 20 years of research and production, it became urgent to proceed to a selection of images, prone to working together. The others, the discarded ones, must be considered as avatars, exercises or, simply, failures.

Humazooics starts from a set of vertical creations (juxtaposed series) that I dismembered to form, after the selection of the images, horizontal gatherings, unsettled structures. Nothing being fixed, the possibility to go back to the series remains possible as Humazooics is designed with suppleness, invention and regeneration.

Humazooics proposes questionings about the meaning or the absence of meaning of our existence, of our humanity but does not provide precise answers. This is a harm anyone who has ever been through a deep philosophical reflection knows well.

Moreover, it’s seems to me important to mention that Humazooics has a evident sociological content.

Esthetical implications :

The possibility for the series to be dismembered brings chaos to the notion of birth of the work. All images emerge from the same philosophical and artistic substrate but some may be paired with others coming from a distant period of time to produce meaning or emotion. The frontier between black and white and colour ceases to matter. The variation of the formats, while shooting and printing, becomes an essential element of Humazooics.

Many thanks to Nancy Van Mol for the nice translation…