Hubert Crabieres is a young photographer living and working in Paris. Usually working with people he meets on Facebook or with close friends, he creates stunning imagery that seems to be ripped out of the deep unconscious. He loves to use his models as mold in order to create not only portraits but also mirrored self portraits.
KALTBLUT: What does photography mean to you?
In the art of photography, I try to make self-portraits through others : my models, my friends, and those who attract or repulse me. I do not have a general theory about photography and I do not try too much to rationalize my work. I do, however, like to work with people with distinct bodies and personalities. I like to perceive in someone else a soft matter that I can’t master, like clay that is about to solidify at the first touch. It is a delicate work to go deep into someone else’s spirit and to invest him like an uncomfortable mold so as to let him express who I am as a photographer. His singularity is the breeding ground of my work from which I build my image. Photography allows me to express an interior tension, an incapacity to really understand the other, to really understand myself, a split between the will to love and the will to manipulate.
KALTBLUT: Where do you get your ideas from?
Hubert: I work in a slightly intuitive manner. Day or night, ideas will come to me. I write it down and then wait for it to find the model who will embody it in the best way. Then it is a bit like a jazz improvisation : I have a frame in which I’m moving freely. The more I know a model, the more my imagination tightens itself around him or her. In that case, the ideas come faster, more accurately, and the frame opens more and more.
ALTBLUT: Do you work with people you know or with strangers and why?
Hubert: Mainly I work with models I find on Facebook. We are complete strangers at the beginning. However, I need a real intimacy with my models to be able to take them in the direction I’m interested in. Thus, I work as regularly as possible with them. Some even become friends. I also take photos of people in my circle, who I can count on to pose for me at practically any time.
KALTBLUT: Are you working on something right now?
Hubert: I do not work on one thing in particular, but I continue to take photos. Then I might edit the photos if I feel a consistent theme starting to show. Things structure themselves quite naturally; I just need patience and time.