Nora Rupp (CH, 1981) lives and works in Lausanne. She studied photography at the School of Applied Arts in Vevey. Since 2010, she is the museum photographer of the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Lausanne. At the same time, she develops and exhibits several artistic projects, such as Sentier Battu, Ako and Henro, in different towns (Paris, Lausanne, Nyon, Assens), and she continues her self-portrait work which she started in 2003.
During her photography studies at the Vevey School of Photography, Nora Rupp discovered the work of Cindy Sherman, which overwhelmed her. She will act as a female artist model for Nora Rupp, who begins to make her own self-portraits. It is often a setting that calls to her: she dives into it, transforms herself, stages herself. An unknown presence emerges and is sculpted to the point of capturing a woman in the wings of Nora Rupp's imagination, which she only reveals for a moment.
Is it to clear up some possible paths at a pivotal moment? Is it to escape from a world in which she has yet to find her place? The approach is impulsive. This moment is without admitted goal; a dialogue for and with itself, far from any gaze.
As the years go by, this ritual accompanies her and refines itself. She accumulates a stock of wigs and possible accessories... then the discovery of a stimulating place often acts as a trigger. The encounter of a particular place and the emotion it brings gives birth to the snapshot of another life, fleeting and with no other constraint than to fully exist for just the time of the capture. These are moments of escape, a childish carnival where Nora invests the presences that pass through her. Could it be the unconscious mourning of some past possibilities or an opening to others still dreamed of? She still refuses to answer.
These women cross paths and grow together. In turn a director, an old defeated woman, a lover...these multiple courses unfold side by side, without ever cancelling or preventing each other. Nora Rupp transgresses temporal laws and the constraints of life choices she may have made, or had to make. The array of shots depict the contemporary woman, in all her contradictions, without hierarchy.
The way they are read and deciphered are so many clues to the movement of a time when women rebel, defend themselves, take up space, search for themselves and confront the world.
Until the confinement, imposed on most of the globe, shortly before spring.
Then, the rules change; she has to stay in one place, surrounded by the family she has built over the years. She can no longer look for any other space than the one she inhabits. Nora Rupp enumerates it in a thousand ways, every day. One shot a day, under the surprised eye of her husband, under the sometimes impatient gaze of her children. The whole family starts to smile about it. What is this woman, or rather, these women, unfolding before their eyes? What is this game with no discernible rules?
Caught in the frameless rhythm of confinement, Nora Rupp digs, searches, seeks, in the smallest corners of her home, to bring out presences, ever stronger, ever more buried.
Then, as if by magic, the children join the circle. Loneliness is broken.
The everyday life she was escaping from invites itself into the frame. A cycle comes to an end. Another begins: the sharing of what she had kept secretly to herself until then.