Unlike other art publications, Les Fichiers Photographiques hones in on just one photographer and explores their work in the context of a broader social issue. The annual journal is the work of Plus Mûrs, a Nantes-based creative studio founded by Méric Chaperon, Vincent Labas and Nassim Bouaza. After graduating from L’ École de Design Nantes Atlantique, the three friends parted ways, working and interning at various studios around the world. However, they soon regrouped in Nantes and decided to pursue their creative interests as a team.
“We wanted to create a platform where photography and graphic design could come together as a printed matter,” Plus Mûrs tells It’s Nice That. Motivated by their interest in photography, graphic design and the possible interactions between the two disciplines, Plus Mûrs set to work. The latest issue focuses on Jose Porroche’s photography and explores the human duality of having or being. “We had a long and intense chat with Jose, which inspired many of our graphic choices. It was important that the layout helped the reader visualise our concept. We decided on a striking cover with a black to red gradient. It can be understood as the dichotomy of the two human states: having and being. We love translating our thoughts and findings into colours, type and different formats.”
The magazine, which is now on its third issue, has developed and evolved over time in accordance with the content it showcases. “Porroche’s photography is both sincere and brutal. It was important to incorporate that into the publication’s format and design. The typographic elements were inspired by the artist’s own words, which we felt were essential to the reader’s understanding of the publication’s overarching idea,” the editors say. Les Fichiers Photographiques’ first issue was printed 15 times, the second 20 times and the third issue saw 50 issues be printed. Available in France, Switzerland and the US, the three publications are now almost sold out with the team considering reprinting Les Fichiers Photographiques N°03 due to its high demand.
“We feel that Les Fichiers Photographiques is becoming an increasingly thought-provoking platform. It may have started as a way to showcase photography. But now, it feels as though the publication has grown to become a dialogue between the photographer, other collaborators and Plus Mûrs. It is the product of different people from different backgrounds, working together to agree on fundamental social and aesthetic questions. It is a very enriching project.”