Orphée by Younès Klouche is a photobook inspired by the similarly titled film from 1950 by Jean Cocteau, itself a reinterpretation of the classic Greek myth of Orpheus. Cocteau’s film features simple but ingenious special effects and explores the symbolism of mirrors as a representation of death. In Klouche’s book, mirrors and visual mirroring feature not only in the photographs themselves but in the object of the book and in the physical act of turning the pages whilst reading. As Cocteau himself stated in The Art of Cinema (1992); "We watch ourselves grow old in mirrors. They bring us closer to death."
Born in Lausanne, Younès Klouche studied photography at ECAL and graduated in 2015. In his work, the photographer seeks to re-define the documentary genre through the use of a conceptual and reflexive approach.
The places documented in Orphée are the same locations as those presented in the the landmark exhibition “New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape” shown at the George Eastman House, Rochester in 1975. This new book therefore represents an essay on the evolution of documentary photography and the current conceptual-reflexive turn that it is taking. There are no staged photographs here, so individually the images can be seen in a reportage aesthetic. But taken together, they drive a fiction; Orphée constructs a place that doesn’t exist, with fragments of the North American reality.