With a background in cinema, Edouard Taufenbach has long been interested in the process of cutting and assembling images. His expert editing skill transforms still photographs into cinematic film strips, injecting time and rhythm into their materiality. Across series, Taufenbach works with found objects—from vernacular photographs to the well-known artworks of Josef Albers—reimagining them in new ways. Slicing and splicing, collaging, and sequencing imagery, Taufenbach animates the original objects, simultaneously multiplying viewpoint and blurring perspective.
The result of his elaborate rearranging is a temporal and spatial off-screen experience typically evoked by film. Taufenbach reconstructs domestic photographs into narrative mysteries, inviting viewers to imagine what transpired before or after the scene before them, or to wonder at the happenings beyond the frame. Vernacular images of leisure, pleasure, and desire, often discovered at flea markets or in private collections, are reassembled into filmstrips operated by the eye of the viewer. Taufenbach’s series Speculaire sources its imagery from the collection of film maker Sebastion Lifshitz. Gathered over thirty years, Lifshitz’s photographs are an international archive of LGBTQ life. More than 400 snapshots make visible what has been invisible, providing anonymous evidence of queer history and the complexities of gender identity and desire.
Delving into these unfamiliar archives, into family memories or the intimate moments of daily life, Taufenbach draws out details that become touchstones of his photographic collages. Hands, eyes, the curve of a hip or intertwined arms generate sequences and suggestions, recalling and retelling the universal instances that propel great cinema.