Interview with NPier
The French artist NPier photographs places where time seems to have stopped. Fascinated by abandonment, NPier believes that beauty in decay demonstrates the fragility of life.
NPier researches sites extensively before visiting them. He always looks for places that appear to be anchored in a different reality than our present day-to-day. In his pictures, the light, the complex composition, and the textures of the interior represent a recollection of forgotten splendor. The photograph captures a perfect moment of stillness within the perpetually moving stream of time.
Could you please introduce yourself and tell us how you started in the arts? and your first experience in art making?
My Artistic name is NPier, i was born in 1983 and I live in France. Since childhood, I always had a camera in hand to capture moments of life. Over the last few years, I’ve tried to capture places where time seems to be suspended. Because of my dad’s job, we have moved a lot in France and outside. Maybe all of this gave me the bug for travels. It probably extended to a desire in exploring unusual places. People tend to walk pass those kind of places without paying too much attention, they don’t seem too interested about them. On my side, I am always curious to see what is on the other side. That’s how I got started.
How would you describe yourself and your artwork?
It is a simply a thirst and crave for adventure mixed with a certain curiosity. I want to see things that other people don’t see. This gives me the feeling of being in a parallel universe which I love. We live in a crazy world where we are constantly chasing time and where consumption is one of the main part of our day to day life. I consider my work as a rupture from our hyper-civilized era. I think it can be seen as a different way of seeing our world, the fragility of it, based on memories.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I’m constantly inspired by my environment, the spaces, buildings, nature but also history.
My work is essentially based on my instinct and emotions. Sometimes a movie or a book can give me a photographic idea.
I am a big fan of Stanley Kubrick’s work especially the way he puts mood and emotions in his pictures, more specifically, the universe that emerges from his films.
What emotions do you hope the viewers experience when looking at your art?
The most important thing for me when people look at my work is for them to understand my message: “The beauty in decay”. I want them to feel taken in another world…My pictures aim to resurface some forgotten splendour that no one thought to consider. When viewers perceive that emotion, I feel very happy and proud.
When do you know that an artwork is finished ?
It’s a very difficult question, probably when I receive positive feedback about it! More seriously, I think an artwork is never really finished, it’s very difficult to identify when a picture is done and ready. It’s always in a state of evolution. I still work on photos taken a long time ago.
What has been the most exciting moment in your art career so far?
My first exhibition is definitely up there. Showing my art to people was really powerful. Thankfully I received many positive feedback which reassured me and pushed me to keep going. This being said, the most exciting was probably to be selected as a finalist of the Chelsea International photography competition. It was a real honour for me. That sent me the signal that I am definitely on the right track.
How long does it take to produce one work?
It varies, all together it can be quite long. There is a whole process of research and planning before actually taking a picture. I spend many hours online, reading books, magazines looking for places to explore in order to capture unique and spectacular spots. Then there is the travel part of it. Finally, before shooting, I always look for something that speaks to me. It could be the texture, the light, the shape, the symmetry…then I take photos. I don’t want to take a picture of a place just to document it, I try to capture something more.
What exciting projects are you working on right now? Can you share some of the future plans for your artworks?
I always have a lot of projects in mind and places that I want to go and explore. I am currently working on a series of photos that will feature the remains of the Soviet Empire. There are still some incredible dormant vestiges from that period. I would like to bring them back to life through my pictures.
Do you have any upcoming events or exhibitions we should know about?
I will participate to an exhibition at AGORA Gallery, New York, from February 20th to 28th 2019 with the Chelsea International Photography Competition. I’m very excited about this event, it will be my first exhibition out of France. It’s a big milestone for me.
Where do you see your art going in five years?
It’s very difficult to say, I want to my art to keep improving and be successful. Success can be measured in different ways. To me, I want my art to give emotions to people I want them to perceive my message and remember that life is fragile and that we have to enjoy every moment of it