Denis Darzacq (*1961)
"Hyper 3", "Hyper 8" and "Hyper 14" from the series "Hyper" 2007
text by Mikkael Kinanen
People float free in against a background of shelves full of goods. The fall is imminent, but for now the people are frozen mid-air in "Hyper".
The photos of the series were shot in hypermarkets, the French equivalent to supermarkets: large markets that are taking the place of small shops. Yet in the photographs the markets' otherwise crowded alleys lay deserted. There are only the model, the camera and shelf after shelf of colourful products.
In Darzacq's earlier series "The Fall" (2005-2006) doesn't deal with specific places or individuals, only the European youth of a certain time. In "Hyper" the generic urban space gave way for the generic supermarket while the models' identity is still left open. Their clothes are ordinary; what is on sale is ordinary. Nothing identifies the youth or the supermarket. The only thing out of ordinary is the model's position in air.
The tragedy of nine-eleventh had entered Darzacq's dreams. He dreamed of the falling people of the twin-towers. The dream combined with his interest in youth's struggles and displacement sparked the first series "The Fall" and later "Hyper". In "Hyper" his eye has already turned more onto the contradiction between the poverty of the young adults and the desire to own and to buy.
The conflict between having and being is central to Darzacq's "Hyper". In a society, where what you own defines who you are, to have meaning and to be is secondary. The young adults are often poor, yet even they are expected to take part in consumerism. The figures float in the air: their bodies exist in a solipsistic state of being while the background is the very symbol of the desire to own the object.
Denis Darzacq is a French photographer and a successful photojournalist. His work consists of photographs of people in public spaces. The pictures do not need to rely on PhotoShop tricks, nor are there any. He has shot the photos well: plain and complex.
Denis Darzacq, " Hyper_14", 2007, Fotografie, Courtesy by Denis Darzacq © Galerie VU