Bittersweet

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    "Bittersweet"
    from Wednesday, November 9, 2022 to Saturday, January 21, 2023
    Galerie XII Paris

    This series is about feelings, sad ones, happy ones and everything in between. It is about joy and fear, it is melancholic and warm, it is about gain and loss, it is about the beginning and the end of life and the whole time in between.”

    The project spans about 20 years and Christopher Thomas believes it will last organically until the end of his life. Taken in multiple locations around the world, the photographs show a range of subjects from a bar in Galveston, Texas, to an abandoned armoury near the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine. The photographs oscillate between sadness and joy, regret and nostalgia, youth and experience. Although no character is present, we can guess the presence of those who once animated these places or continue to inhabit these spaces.

    The work combines the objective eye of the documentary photographer with a conceptual project: a first approach aimed at exploring the theme of childhood and «Glückseligkeit» which can be translated as bliss or bliss. The next idea was to investigate the «Übergänge» or the transition between life and death. These two concepts have come together in such a way that the experiences of youth flow naturally into the flow of mortality study, as a culmination of a childlike fascination with cemeteries.

    The photographer invites us to imagine the drama inherent in the clues that run through each scene. There is a sense of decline that the passage of time inevitably inflicts on places and structures. But many of these photographs will raise a smile of gratitude and bring us back to a young and carefree hedonism. Poignant memories that remind us of rites of passage, from the mere thrill of ice cream on the beach to our first loves and the night dance until dawn.

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