Photography Léna Maria and her Fauves

Léna Maria and her Fauves

Anna Frattini

Fauve is a series by Léna Maria, a French photographer, which explores the connection between humans and the external world and intuition. It examines the desire not so much towards nature, but towards the living. Its aim is to awaken the senses and strengthen inner listening, seeking a deep and animal instinct. Maria draws inspiration from Kali, an Indian mythological figure of transformation, and the series also references the feminist poet Monique Wittig, emphasizing the theme of female emancipation. The images – in color and black and white – narrate fragments of stories of women moving forcefully towards something akin to themselves, representing an inner search and a path of transformation.

The excerpt accompanying the project is a passage from “Les Guerillères,” a novel by Monique Wittig where – as we can read – the life, rituals, and legends of a group of women are described. This passage thus seems to resonate in the journey recreated by the photographer, echoing like a friendly voice.

There was a time when you were not a slave, remember. You leave alone, full of laughter, you wet your bare belly. You say you’ve lost your memory, remember. Wild roses bloom in the forest. Your hand tears the bushes to gather blackberries and raspberries to refresh yourself. You run to catch young hares, skinning them on the rocks so you can eat them warm and bloody. You know how to avoid encountering a bear on the path. You know the fear of winter when you hear the wolves gathering. But you can sit for hours on top of the trees waiting for the morning. You say there are no words to describe this time, you say it does not exist. But remember. Strive to remember. Or, failing that, invent.

From Les Guerillères, Monique Wittig
Written by Anna Frattini
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