The romantic vision of photographer Jean Pierrot
It was right before last Christmas that we were blessed with the book Romance from Slovenian photographer Jean Pierrot. A beautiful book, compiling the most magical places and women this earth has to offer. To celebrate his first book, we did a short Q&A over the mail.
Hi Jean, congratulations with this great book. Could you tell us why you started this project?
In its core, this book tries to tells my story of remoteness from everyday life. Something I believe that romance can be. It’s my falling in love, embodied and dissected in a book that is no statement but merely a personal album of memories. It demystifies an intimate process we all unknowingly undertake at least once. Just a friendly reminder of people’s lack of fun, emotions, feelings and freedom.
You’ve been working for quite a few years now, why was this the right time for you to compile it into one book?
I archived more than a few thousand images in around four years of shooting. It felt like the right time to do it. It was also something I needed to do to move on and grow.
You’ve done the production and design yourself, what was the biggest challenge making this book?
First I developed a new biorhythm in order to be able to edit the book. My friends tell me I was very unpleasant and became neurotic but I think it was a pretty good system I had going. Taking every aspect of the book as equally important, it’s hard to say what the biggest challenge was. Editing the book was the most time consuming, it took me more than a year and it was probably the most exhausting part. Luckily my business partner Jakob Wilfan was a big help on the production and logistics.
‘ The book was something I needed to do to move on and grow. ’
‘ The book was something I needed to do to move on and grow. ’
Could you tell us a bit about the artwork on the cover?
The cut-out on the back cover is by a friend, John Zabawa. I wanted very primitive artwork that captured the general mood of my book but still was abstract enough to sustain the mystery throughout the book. But maybe I’m the wrong one to ask, John and I might have very different interpretations of the artwork.
We have a few books with a similar style with Akila Berjaoui, Dennis Swiatkowski, and Purienne, what distinguishes your work from the rest?
Purienne is a dear friend of mine and occasional mentor as well as my business partner. We share a lot of common views about the world. But if I would want to point out a distinguishment in my work from any other photographer, or human for that matter, it would mean I’d have to compare myself to them. Which I would rather not.
Where were these photos made and who are these women?
The book was photographed in a span of four years, taking me around the globe more than a few times. With tourist revolution peaking I’d rather not disclose the exact locations.
Story of my romance is visualised in six chapters by twenty-one friends, girlfriends and muses.
What inspires you?
With all the noise and saturation around me, whether it’s sound or light, the raw, honest landscapes and looks inspire me the most at the moment.
Is there something in particular that you want to evoke with your work?
Most artists use their work as a therapy to express themselves —show who they are as individuals but still get some kind of feedback or conformation that they did good, that they are sane and sometimes to feed their ego. I try to sustain a more objective language that communicates a positive approach to living —a quality look at the world.
Thanks to my photography, I’ve probably become more observant to my environment than most people, which is definitely a tool I’m able to use to point out and communicate something obvious but hidden to the common eye.
Now that the book’s here, what’s next? Do you have any plans for the near future?
A lot. With the book in the process of being released I’ve been finishing my ambient audio album — compositions and sound recordings from my travels in a collection soon to be published. Besides that, I am working on my next book, a short documentary film, and I am working with Purienne on creating a lifestyle brand/guide and a book.
Pierrot’s Romance is now available HERE.
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