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Elizabeth A.Sackler Center for Feminist Art

Lucie Rocher

Montreal,
Canada

Lucie Rocher was born in 1988 and is a French photographer.

She currently lives and works in Montreal where she is pursuing her PhD, De la vitalite de l’identite neutre, vers l’emergence d’un corps politique / From the vivid neutral identity to the rise of a political body at UQAM.

She has collaborated with painters, choreographers and dancers in recent works, exploring identity and normativity through landscapes and portraits. The fragility of the body’s appearance, or its unstable architecture, drove her to imagine how it performs out of frame. The body may become genderless but is recognizable by the distress that inhabits it. A neutral gender is revealed, belonging to all of humankind, and the body is thus objectified. Her works are focused on the concept of body neutrality, and they exude a strong, soothing intensity. She feels it is important for art to engage with society and the political statement behind her work can be defined as a stand against gender binaries. Inspired by intimacy and desire, she looks to her relationships with others to nourish her artistic identity.

In 2011, she obtained a Master’s in visual arts at University Paris 1, The Sorbonne, with a specialization in “Living image- Body image.” Shortly thereafter, she received a scholarship from La Fondation de France and began work on a PhD at the NYU Steinhardt School in New York.

She has exhibited her work in Paris, New York and has an upcoming show in Montreal.

Her photographs can also be found in private collections in France, Belgium and the US.

Feminist Artist Statement

“Masculine? Feminine? It depends on the situation. Neuter is the only gender which always suits me. If it existed in our language, my thought would be less nebulous.” Claude Chaun, Avex nos avenus (Disavowed confessions), Ed. du Carrefour, 1930, p. 176

Based on the premise that the body is the very first form of architecture in a geographical, cultural and social context, my photographic work questions the concept of gender by examining the idea of neutrality in general, associated with image processing as a neutral form of expression.

I take special interest in all that is liminal, developing and latent, and everything that is not clearly defined or complete. I like to explore a sort of unresolved fickleness in a landscape or an individual. In the 70’s, Roland Barthes stated: “It’s not a question of finding oppositions in our perception of the world or the subject but identifying contradictions, excess, leaks, infringements, shudderings and slidings.”

Present in different artistic fields, from visual arts to post-modern dance, the Neutral form leads to a normative deconstruction and the disruption of contemporary lines of thought. The Neutral is neither sterile nor apolitical. On the contrary, it enables reinvention, shattering and overturning of the normative language we use to build and shape fixed identities. It is paradoxically alive: a weapon against inflexible, set meanings.

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