Theatre on the Harbor.

2019-2020, Analog photography project realised in Rotterdam’s harbour in 2019. Those pictures where realized with a Linhof Technika chamber, a 50mm Carl Zeiss Distagon lens. The film used were either 4X5 inch Rollei Infrared 400 or Kodak 320txp. The artist Nathan Favot played all characters.

Nathan Favot practice has developed over the years around the definitions of identity, past projects have been assemblages composed of personal and collective tales he gathered.

For this project he directly extracted characters from his past project, “Looking Beyond the Five”. The mains roles of this theatre play were set free from their natural environment.

This group exists in his work as alter egos, avatars representing different moments of (his) life that he stage and integrate into different environments. For this project, he has re-integrated them into a newly composed history, built as a chronicle around Rotterdam’s harbour.

There are now five of them which he plays and capture on analogue photographs. Le Francais, The Sailor, The Ghost, The Mechanic, The Naked Guy.

As they walk off the stage, those characters enter the “real” world and try to discover what their part could be in this new reality. Some will try to blend in, while some over might try to deform their identities and re-invented a role beyond the pre-shaped act that defined them.

The port of Rotterdam contains so much history while its activities and life are always submitted to flux and traffic. The characters from the play are nothing more than objects and values here as their fix  portrayal is getting shifted by the harbor’s environment. This state of transition offer by the pier was the reason Nathan used analogue photography, in an attempt to fix this permanent movement of matter in a visual form that seems block in time.

In the frame of the docks, the project is a representation of the historical hypertrophy in which we live. Those images are to be put in perspective with the subjective and arbitrary process of our memory.  Memory acts as a foundation of our identity, souvenirs stand at the base of the narrative construction we permanently build around ourselves.

Through his history and the one of the harbor, it is a larger question regarding facts and fiction Nathan Favot would like to explore. This project examines the faculty human had to always build myth and legend around themselves. This process is fascinating, and limitless, the picture therefor simply marks a moment in time and captured a fragment of this work in process we call personality. 

In this work, Nathan Favot is questioning and exploring fine lines separating facts and fiction, collective history, and identity. This chronicle is blends in the wharfs’ environment, a space that permanently evolves and changes. A space where identities and histories were often forged as lost.