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Noir Limite
1986/1993

To see the texts of the catalogues Noir Limite (Jean-Claude Lemagny, Bernard Lamarche-vadel, Jacques Henric)
pdf

To see proclamations Noir Limite
(pdf)

Jean-Claude Bélégou, Yves Trémorin and Florence Chevallier meet in july 1984 in Arles. In January 1985, Yves Trémorin and Florence Chevallier joined the association Photographies&Co, previously founded by Jean-Claude Bélégou, and took the decision to set up the group Noir Limite. From now on, Noir Limite became the main core of Photographies&Co activities.
It immediatly appeared pretty obvious to them that their works were equally standing aside from the rest of contemporary photography as well as contemporary art that was shown in France at that time. In addition to this, they also shared a common idea of existence as well as a similar approach of the body.
As a result, they published in January 1986 a manifest. "Photography is about surfaces, external aspects of things and beings. Photography is about staging the reality. To bind oneself to external appearences: the skin, grazed, nude, naked, stretched, alive, wounded. To bind oneself to the body's substance, where it is defenceless and where its weakness is the most obvious, no longer able to share the outside from the inside, the skin from the flesh. To reach the point when the body's substance is imperiling itself and puts us in state of crisis, in state of desire.To burst the surface. To burst the body."
The manifest came with their first exhibition (vailed nudes, rumpled nudes, selfportraits nudes). From now on, they carried out their projects together, working separatly but always submitting their results to an unceasing moral and inellectual confrontation.
Associating pessimism and aesthetics, the group's name announced a work always worried to push photography towards its limits, in its subjects (intimity,inner life, sensation, prohibitions, hollyness) as much as in the plastic abilities of the photographic medium( blackness, fuzziness, images cutted, illegibility, strong close ups). Noir Limite also aludes to the artist's conciousness of the human tragedy.
In 1987 the exhibition "The Flesh" was created, immediatly judged scandalous and censored. "The Flesh" could only be shown in 1989 especially in Paris, thanks to Bernard Lamrache Vadel's support.
Jean-Claude Lemagny and Pierre Borhan from the review "Clichés", as well as Pierre Bastin and many other critics choosed to side with Noir Limite.
In 1989 the group organized a large scaled performance at the Graville Priory that lasted for two nights where they printed thirty pictures on fourty meters of photographic paper fixed on the walls of the church's chorus in front of the public. The place chosen for the first performance reveals the artists concerns with rituals and ceremony.
the pictures printed separated one from another by graffities were developped wthi atomizers and sponges.
In 1990, two exhibitions were created, gathering the numerous works realised by the three artists since their association (The Women, by Yves Trémorin: The Grand Mother, The Mother, The Wife; holly Body, by Jean-Claude Bélégou: Water, Virgins; Faces and Nudes in Naples by Florence Chevallier.)This exhibition was censored in Italy.This year, Noir Limite was also part of international exhibitions, one created for the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of Photography ("French Photography in Liberty", initiated by the French Association for Artistical Action under Jean-Claude Lemagny's supervision), the other "Twenty years of Creative Photography in France", initiated by Gilles Mora.
In 1991, the exhibition "The Death" was created and shown in the former slaughter house of Le Havre. The large size pictures were fixed with iron cables stretched between concrete pillars. The catalogue of the exhibition gathered texts from Jean-Claude Lemagny, Bernard Lamarche-Vadel and Jacques Henric who baptised the group "the infernal trio of French Photography".
Without finishing the third chapter of their project on the existence started with "The Flesh" and "The Death", Noir Limite dissolved in April 1993.This decision, which was part of the project of the group, was taken regarding the progressive divergence between their personnal artistical evolution.

Performance Noir Limite à Mont Saint-Aignan : tirages grand format en public (photographie Claude Perrain)
Performance Noir Limite à l'Abbaye de Graville, tirages grand format en public, juin 1989, commémorations du bicentenaire de la révolution : autoportrait du groupe.
Performance Noir Limite à l'Abbaye de Graville, tirages grand format en public, juin 1989, commémorations du bicentenaire de la révolution, image de la série "les voiles"