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LE SUJET (The subject), 2006
"play", Blue Back Billboard Paper 200 x 146 cm, 258 x 190 cm (according to the place of the exhibition) and 6 inkjet prints 63 x 77 cm mounted on aluminium

From March 2006 till June 2006, I went two or three times a week to the Unit of psychiatry of the mental development of the Geneva University Hospitals in Belle-Idée. Beyond the institution, I was interested in the patients and in meeting them. After the Patients agreed to be photographed, I took a series of portraits, which helped me as well to get in touch with them. The appearance of the face marks the recognition of the other and its equal humanity. I’m attracted by the appearance, which speaks to us without telling of what it is made, by the impalpability of identity, by the indisputable singularity of every human being. The face is the place of our personal adventure, as it is, since we don’t see ourselves, the place of the other one. The face is, by etymology, an object of vision.

"A character represented in a picture remains a riddle, not so much on the social plan but more by the nature of the representation. This enigmatic dimension is peculiar to art. In real life, when someone meets someone, they can speak together, exchange ideas, learn to know themselves. The picture, it, represents the other one as a riddle. […] we are a riddle for ourselves, and we can make this experience in art."1
The gesture, also, seems to announce us something, is it telling us more than the face?
"The gesture generates the real in the dialectic which intends it for the other – in pictures, it is particularly intended for the eye"2, and questions us. The face and the gesture are the framework of the story, which tells itself, in the pure representation, in halftone.

"Unable to see us, we imagine ourselves. And each one, dreaming oneself and in front of others, remains alone behind his face."3

1. Jeff Wall, Essays et discussions 1984-2001, Paris, Ecole nationale supérieure des beaux-arts, september 2001, p. 35
2. Jeff Wall, op. cit., p. 38
3. René Daumal, named by David Le Breton, Des visages. Essai d’anthropologie, Paris, Anne-Marie Métailié, collection « Suites Sciences Humaines », 2003, p. 9