© Jean-Christian Bourcart, Untitled, from the series Stardust, 2006
© Jean-Christian Bourcart, Untitled, from the series Traffic, 1999-2001
“In Jean-Christian’s photos, which are sometimes printed almost lifesize, he opens the door but a bit shyly, not intruding, as if hanging back in the doorway. The empty rooms are portraits in themselves, full of clues to the occupants’ identities. They are touching, in the womens’ almost pathetic attempts at creating an air of eroticism with their posters, their fake satin sheets covered with towels instead of blankets offering nowhere to hide, and their heart-shaped pillows. The Hawaiian room, the Elvis room, the heavily equipped S&M room, the Empire room with the gilt mirror and flocked wallpaper, the tropical room: they exude isolation and loneliness.
Stuffed animals piled on a couch suggest a girl barely out of childhood, striving for some emotional comfort. One man stares into a room romantically decorated with roses and fragile paper fans. As he sizes up the commodity, Jean-Christian captures something arrogant in his body language. The women are often strongly defined individuals, unlike the men. Only occasionally does JC reveal the men as vulnerable, as in a photo where the client is naked and the proud woman is fully dressed. In the true light of the place, the red underlit glow that pervades nearly all the pictures, it is impossible to see eyes, and rarer to see features but so much is revealed through the nuances of stances and postures in the girls’ bodies.”
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