Marie Valognes’ playful and sculptural compositions

3 October 2016
Reading Time
2 minute read

French born, London-based still life photographer and art director Marie Valognes is back with new work. “I often experiment with form and compositions by creating playful series. It’s not only a fun exercise, but it also allows me to explore new territories within the practice,” she explains.

Marie is perhaps best known for the witty sculptures she made under her pseudonym “mise en” for AnOther during S/S and A/W 2016 fashion weeks based on runway looks. Marie’s skillful eye for visual associations placed a blue candle dripping with wax mounted on cork in the place of an all-deconstructed-denim everything look from Marques’Almeida, while an asymmetric orange long-sleeved t-shirt styled with beige flares by fashion world favourites Vetements was reimagined by Marie as an orange-wrapped tube of smoked cheese placed on a light brown paper bag.

In her latest 80s postmodernism inspired series Grid, Marie continues to use objects in unconventional ways to create surreal sculptures, with wire coils, fluffy pompoms, geometric shapes cut from perspex, volcanic rock, paperclips, ribbon, springs and a cupcake case all making an appearance. Her favourite materials, Marie tells us, are “anything colourful and tactile, so kids’ craft materials are great, plus I collect all sorts of objects and shapes, bought in pound shops, markets or found in nature".

The objects and background colours change between images, but the overall effect stays the same — odd totem-like columns made up of objects seemingly suspended in mid-air. So how does she create them? ”With a lot of patience, invisible wire and carefully placed Blu-Tack, which are essentials for still life. I also play optic tricks with distances, which are meant to make the sculptures look like a balancing act.” 

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Bryony Stone

Bryony joined It's Nice That as Deputy Editor in August 2016, following roles at Mother, Secret Cinema, LAW, Rollacoaster and Wonderland. She later became Acting Editor at It's Nice That, before leaving in late 2018.

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