“Wonderful Journey – Flying Balloon” is part of the narrative and intimate photographic project of the young contemporary photographer Aurélia Faudot.
AN AMERICAN STAGE
The project takes shape between the end of her studies in California, her debut in a photo studio in San Francisco and her return to France a few months before the pandemic. The artist fills his backpack with colorful dresses, hangs his camera on his shoulder, and sets off to travel the roads of the American West Coast. The project is set in Lake Tahoe in Nevada, the cliffs of the Santa Cruz region, the Grand Canyon in Arizona and the California water reserves.
AN INITIATORY ADVENTURE
She made a series of self-portraits at a pivotal age and stage in her life. She was 20 years old and it was the beginning of a new life on a new continent. Barely out of your teens, you think you already know a lot of things. You have made many decisions for the rest of your life, you want to eat the world. At the same time, you feel helpless in front of the immensity of the journey still to be accomplished.
20 years old, it is an age at which all conviction can quickly be shaken. Projects can fall apart, be rebuilt and the vision of life can change.
In this work, the young photographer explores self-discovery, liberation through change of scenery and travel. She also addresses the notions of happiness, fulfillment and material (dis)possession.
A COLLECTIVE STORY
Finally, these balloons symbolize all those things that carry us, make us get our head out of the water, help us to grow but also to flee. We are firmly attached to them. But these balloons are only what they are and, pushed by the wind, they can quickly change direction or fly away permanently. They then invite us to question their presence but especially the possibility of their absence.
This project realized at the end of 2017 has since been tinged, in light of the exceptional situations we all go through, with a new nuance. This need for travel, freedom and emancipation intensifies and takes on even more importance as we measure its fragility.
“Wonderful Journey – Flying Balloon” is therefore a bit like the last chapter of this narrative. The balloon is finally released towards its destiny, the hand that held it has its life in hand…