The encounter of two cousins, one photographer, the other film director, clown and G, has resulted in this series of photographs done with a 4×5 chambre. It encompasses the ocean of possibilities of how human beings interact with the world, with themselves and others. From there this project reveals how we connect with Mother Nature and how absurdity may rise from it.
Alberstein, a little man in a grey suit, with a squashed hat, decides to make an initiatory journey with his ball in the Petit Morin valley, to discover landscapes, seasons and himself.
What a strange pair! Are they the two protagonists of the same journey, or two parts of a lone traveller? Alberstein is a clown. The ball is the Other : a character in its own right, a travelling companion, a confidant, partner in an imaginary circus. But the ball is also an extension of Albertstein, his spiritual body, his state of mind, his existential burden, his preoccupations, the metaphor of his relationship to the world…The ball is his problem, as well as his raison d’être. Unlikely relationship. Impossible relationship?
This red ball, 1.80m in diameter, as tall as a man, is the antithesis of a natural object in its shape, colour and materiality. It becomes the focal point of the image, even though it only fills a small part of it, in the same way that our relationship to others can fill our field of consciousness. As we only exist in relation to an environment, and we can only define ourselves by coming into contact with others, this year-long journey, through his relationship to his environment and himself, is a search for identity, like the slow process of self-awareness.
We constantly question the relationship between the ball and the clown. What do they mean to each other ? What is this relationship, what does it mean? Each image reveals a scene in the making, a landscape crossed, the transience of nature. From the myth of Sisyphus to Charlie Chaplin, from Buster Keaton to the average person, Alberstein is the « ultimate unsung hero ».
All images and text © Cyrus and Nicolas Cornut
By Cyrus Cornut
Edge of Humanity Magazine is an independent nondiscriminatory platform that has no religious, political, financial, or social affiliations.
We are committed to publishing the human condition, the raw diverse global entanglement, with total impartiality.
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