Antoine d’Agata
12 02 … 15 05 2011


The photography of Antoine d’Agata is more a question of suggestion than identification, more an evocation than a representation. The fruit of his nocturnal wanderings associated with a sliver of the subconscious, thanks to psychotropic substances, the images can be out of focus, fleeting, wandering toward a dark, deep but rarely reached lyricism.
For the past ten years, Antoine d’Agata has been travelling the world, preferably at night, using his wanderings to depict a dark, tortured universe, far from reportage. He now brings us into his own off-kilter world, making us uneasy spectators.
For the past four years, the Museum has supported the work of Antoine d’Agata and has a complete collection of his most recent work. This exhibition is the result of this partnership.

My work, whether it is in journal or documentary form, is above all a shout, an instinctive, irrational, sometimes excessive but always sincere reaction to the horror all men must face.
Antoine d’Agata

Antoine d’Agata’s work can be defined as an autobiographical realisation, a personal diary.The photographer documents how he lives at the moment he is living it, all around the world.
He lets himself get caught up in a whirlwind, unaware of the consequences and risks involved which brings an incomparable reality to the instants he seizes. His choices are sub-conscious, but his obsessions are unchanging : sexuality, fear, darkness, death… He captures both ordinary and extreme experiences. The shots come from chance meetings and situations. The brutality of the form and the exaggeration of the vision oblige us to take an interest in the reality we see before us. The spectator thus moves away from his position as voyeur or consumer to share in extreme experiences and question the state of the world and himself.

Antoine d’Agata has never had so many hooks and space to establish his narrative. « Ice » is put together as a collection of all types of documents: photographs, contact sheets, letters, videos, etc. As the weeks go by other photographs and documents will be added. The exhibition is different in that it is evolving, hanging will continue throughout the entire event. This is an experimental photographic installation, spread over space and time.

In Japan or Cambodia, ghosts at the bedside, always the same girls in lugubrious brothels and everything that goes with it, that can be consumed with it, lies the dark hunt of Antoine d’Agata. It may be a hunt, but it is a compassionate one as the photographer has frequented these places since he was extremely young and has always loved the outcast.
He is one himself. And even though it all seems to repeat itself in the same scenes ad nauseam, each shot is unique, each encounter embraces the bodies, the principle of life and it’s contrary, truthfully. Faced with such an unflinching account, we hear « from afar, prolonged screams of the most poignant pain »… We, forbidden and fearful spectators, are faced with our own demons, our own configurations.
Those who take these photos as they come understand nothing, seeing only a fatal and pornographic relationship.
They are nocturnal images; they are never really in focus. Reality evaporates around the photographer and his female double. There is no backdrop; it is dark in this « huis-clos ».

Antoine d’Agata blindly searches for the sinister oracle who can tell the final truth in this theatre of cruelty in a world that is no longer vast. If he ever finds it, his story may come to an end.

Francois Cheval, Curator of the musée Nicéphore Niépce