Pas de Jeu

Real-Life Girlfriend (it’s no game) , 2003.
C-type photograph mounted on dibond. 75cm x 110cm.
David Michael Clarke – Real-Life Girlfriend (it’s no game). C-type photograph mounted on dibond. 75cm x 110cm. Pas de Jeu, France. 2003.
Anabelle Hulaut – Jeu de pas, Bons Baisers On the Road. C-type photograph. 75cm x 110cm. Pas de Jeu, France. 2003.

When two artists meet, life becomes complicated. When two artists meet and fall in love, life can become unbearable. Books have been written on this subject. Anabelle Hulaut and I live together. As artists, each has his/her own individual practice, but as critics, friends, or lovers, the implication that we each have in the work of the other is as complicated as it is diverse.

As young artists (like many young artists), Anabelle Hulaut and I often suffered from “financial irregularities”. As a result, in our artistic practices, in our daily lives, and on holiday, we would share one camera and one video-camera, (and films, cassettes, memory sticks and minidiscs). Sometimes exposed films would stay for months in the fridge waiting for “development funding”. In the summer of 2002, there came a point where there were 8 films awaiting development, a little money came in, and the photos went off to the lab. In looking, and rediscovering the photos (which were a mix of Anabelle’s work, my work, and holiday snaps), our respective gazes were both stopped by the same image.

I thought that it was one of my works, in which I asked Anabelle to pose next to the entry sign of a little french village. Anabelle thought that it was a work by her, in which she (as an artist) positioned herself next to the afore-mentioned sign, and asked me to document the action.

Doubt was everywhere, but we were both strong. And both of us could see how the image fitted into our own practice, and that of the other. Finally, we decided to print up two identical copies of the image. One of the prints would become a unique piece signed by Anabelle, to which she would give a title and which would be ‘framed’ by the rest of her work. The other would become a unique piece by me, to which I would give a title, and which would be ‘framed’ by the rest of my work.

Anabelle and I were married in 2003. For our honeymmon, we were invited to participate in the same exhibition (Entre / Arada , curator : Ali Akay, Proje4L, Museum of Contemporary Art, Istanbul). For the first time, the two works could be seen hanging next to each other. In 2004, both works were purchased by “Le Ring” (the ‘arthotèque’ collection of the city of Nantes).