Géraldine Lay

Picking up a book and skimming through it is a very personal act for all. There are several possibilities open to us: either we flick through the pages in their natural order, the back of the book firmly in our left hand, the right thumb allowing the pages to slip by one-by-one in chronological order, or we proceed in the opposite direction and settle for anachronism. To follow or disturb the passage of time is a choice that naturally changes our perceptions.

With Géraldine Lay’s photography, however, we do not have the choice. Harassed by hanging moments, we skim through the world as its scenes unfold before us. In the photographer’s organizing eye, the real supplies order, while the protagonists, acting out each instant, play their own familiar roles. What we do not see is an artefact of reality played out by well-directed comedians. With such foundations for perspective in place, we are invited to share the ellipses punctuating her own sense of unfolding time. This nuance makes all the difference.

Some photography is a mere tool for recording; others, like Géraldine Lay, lovers of photography, allow it do more than merely recording fractions of time. Géraldine Lay finds the magic that weaves into place each time the shutter clicks; she understands that stopping and splicing time will always bring us back to the fragility of our existence, and that, when this is successful, it engenders emotion. Our gaze then ricochets around to the rhythm of the echoes and the quivering of the fragile beauty of kaleidoscopic fragmentation, the beauty of her own intimate vision. We are offered an order, a layout and choice but as we gaze through her work the whisper of each photo grows louder and the vibration of the real filters in. A diffuse expectation infuses the twilight glows and subdued colours of the images. The subtle poetry of somnolence settles in, and this second state ensures we sense the uncertainty of the moment.