Martine Fougeron: Tête-à-Tête, 2008

28 February - 12 April 2008

Peter Hay Halpert fine Art is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition of  photographs by Martine Fougeron from the series Tête-à-Tête. The exhibition will open on Thursday, February 28 and close on Saturday, April 12. A  reception for the artist will be held on Thursday February 28 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. 

Tête-à-Tête is a series of intimate portraits of the artist’s two adolescent sons and their friends, taken in their home in New York City as well as in the South of France. Naturally observed, this on-going series brings the artist face-to-face with her teenage sons as well as the private world of adolescent boys. Begun in the fall of 2005, the work explores adolescence as a liminal state, between childhood and adulthood, between the feminine and the masculine and between innocence and a burgeoning self-consciousness. The Tête-à-Tête series represents an ongoing look at the adolescent boys’ heightened journey into self-discovery. The exhibition consists of 18 color photographs, covering a two-year period from 2005 to 2007, where one perceives subtly and yet vividly the metamorphosis of these striking adolescents.

Fougeron walks a fine line between documenting her family life on the one hand, and dispassionately observing, on the other. These pictures are a visual diary of her sons’ daily life. At the same time, Fougeron is a witness, at a camera’s remove, to the world of young boys transitioning into manhood. Fougeron’s inspiration derives from Dutch painting, especially Vermeer's mysterious domestic scenes, and is also influenced by conventions of cinema, with particular regard for the dramatic effects of set lighting.  The moments she captures depict the rites of passage from a state of grace to a state of consciousness. The boys’ experiences are both timeless and grounded in the particular moments of youth at the dawn of the 21st century.

Ms. Fougeron’s work is quickly gaining recognition. This series has received awards in national and international juried shows (First Prize in portraiture at the Golden Light Awards 2006; PX3 Paris 2007; the Berenice Abbott First Prize for an Emerging Photographer; nominated for Santa Fe’s Photography Prize; included in PhotoLucida’s Critical Mass). Her work has been exhibited in group shows in New York City, Los Angles and, most recently, at the 2006  Rencontres d’Arles, in France.  Excerpts from this series were selected for the Art + Commerce festival, PEEK 2007, and published in Capricious #7, as well as American Photograph #23. Her photographs have been also published in the New York Times Magazine and New York Magazine.

Martine was educated at the Lycée Français de New York, Wellesley College, the Institut d’Etudes Politiques in Paris, and the International Center of Photography. Martine was born in Paris and presently lives in New York City.