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Frozen in Time


During a residency exchange between CALQ and the Christoph Merian Foundation in Switzerland, Nathalie Daoust created a series of images set in an ambiguous world where dream and reality clash. Here memory and introspection build a labyrinth of illusion and mystery. These photographs allowed Ms. Daoust to consciously reconstruct a time in her past, piece-by-piece. Filling the gaps in her memory with visual portrayals of fantasy, she depicts a life-like tale, based on real events. Her concept was driven by the desire to freeze certain moments in time in order to preserve them intact, like works of art, while also giving them the possibility to move, to change position, and redeem themselves, thanks to an unexpected second life offered through art. This concept arose from the feelings of discomfort, abandonment, and desolation she felt when facing a landscape that appeared flawless. To escape, she physically created a new realm, one we sense but cannot physically inhabit. Thus, women in the photographs clash and lack synchrony with their environment, and the seemingly ambivalent images pulse with a sensation that falls somewhere between lightness and restlessness.