Fascination and instinct guide my steps around a young woman in the making. A transformation that, for a mother, raises many questions.
One day, Lou Elena finally agreed to let me photograph her. She was 13 years old. The age when a child gradually becomes a woman. What was the awareness that had taken place in her? She let me give free rein to the fascination she exercises on me.
I captured moments that, paradoxically, I might have looked at from another angle if I hadn't had the camera in front of my eyes. But photographing them was a necessity. To better understand her relationship with the body, to better grasp the nature of the relationships between girls. To realize that a form of sisterhood develops which knows little restraint and supplants, for a time at least, the relationship with men.
This urge to show off one's body, to expose it in selfies appeals to me. Just as I am moved by the beauty of these young bodies, fresh and without false modesty. I believe that this point is important. Rather feminist, I do not expose my daughter any less. Is this not simply an ode to life as it naturally unfolds?
Lou Elena is also about our relationship. About those moments when she invites me into her life, when she takes me to witness her happiness. Those, too, when I am almost not welcome, but still there. And those when she forgets me.
Some of these suspended moments move me profoundly. Other moments when Lou Elena poses, and is not really her, are part of the construction of a young woman. I am the privileged witness.
There is also movement. The movement of bodies. The movement of friendships that are strong, then disappear, then come back. The movement of the moods that are specific to this period of transformation. And these faces which are sometimes that of a child and the moment after that of a woman.
I believe that this work is simply a hymn to life and to the complicity between women, be they friends or mother and daughter.