Researching Art #3

From 07 July 2014 to 13 July 2014

Arles - Since 2011, a partnership signed between Inserm and École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie (ENSP) has helped to build bridges between two worlds—science and art. This year, four students in photography spent residencies in three laboratories at the Cordelier Research Centre in Paris. The fruit of this research has given rise to an exhibition and a publication.

Additional Information

Visit the ENSP website

Public: All welcome
Venue: Galerie du Haut, ENSP – 16 rue des Arènes, Arles
Dates and Times: Monday 7 to Sunday 13 July 2014, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm-7:00 pm. Launch Tuesday 8 July at 6:00 pm.

Since 2011, “La Recherche de l'Art” has allowed second-year students at École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie (ENSP) to develop their abilities at Inserm's research laboratories.

This year, four second-year students had the opportunity to spend residencies in three laboratories at the Cordelier Research Centre in Paris.

Each in his or her own style, according to their sensitivities and knowledge of the world of science, had to meet the twofold challenge they were given: to free themselves from scientific strictures in order to avoid being too literal, and to give both researchers and the general public a different view of science.

© Rebecca Topakian

Four broad themes were developed by the students:

  • "Distortion:” a study of vision and its mechanics in the Ophthalmology Laboratory at the Cordelier Centre provided B. Bellabas with a cross-cutting perspective—between art and science—on the visual experience, and the image as a subject of sensory experience. It involves using images and their digital representations to revisit the basis of photography: what are we actually seeing?
  • “Identification” through the teeth, the mouth and the jaw. These are the elements of an intimate organ which also constitutes an interface between the self and the world. For Rebecca Tomakian, the Laboratory of Molecular Oral Pathophysiology opened up a vast field of exploration, with the common denominator of the jaw as a marker of identity. From a film star grin to severe dysmorphism—how does our smile determine our relationship with the world?
  • “Strategies” throughout the body, which has an astonishing system for defence against the “non-self.” There are many strategies to fight foreign agents. The Immunology Laboratory brought Camille M. to the heart of the matter, in order to observe the anatomy of these battles. What does this “other world” look like?
  • And finally, “Heritage,” a cross-cutting theme that encompasses the world's wealth of knowledge, and the genetic and architectural heritage that we all inherit and pass on. Anne-Sophie Tritschler revisited this multi-faceted theme with the research teams at the Immune Microenvironment and Tumors Laboratory, and the Laboratory of Antibody Engineering and Biotechnology. Scientists try to define and circumscribe all things in order to understand their most minute mechanisms. The results of experiments and samples are demonstrated by images; everything is preserved, published and archived. If knowledge can be obtained from images, how does research proceed to reveal the world's secrets? What images of this world will we leave to our fellow beings?

Educational support: Christian Gattinoni, a commissioner and educator at ENSP

© Camille M.

© Anne-Sophie Tritschler


© B. Bellalas

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