Inside Views, by French photographer Floriane de Lassée, is a stunning photographic series of images that portrays the beauty of solitude through intimate scenes of people living within cityscapes. Floriane’s approach to photographing titillates our voyeuristic gaze and takes us from the collective to the intimate, from the infinitely large to the infinitely small. At first glance, an introduction of sweeping urban landscapes presents us with the formal face of the big city, but a closer look reveals the presence of its residents as they exist within the privacy of their environments. Inside each glass abode or remote space, these citizens of the world enjoy a moment of solitude, contemplation or playfulness amidst bustling and lively surroundings where opportunities to connect with others abound. Within the collection, a few desolate yet captivating settings, void of any human presence, invite viewers to take in the splendor of emptiness. Each singular vision exists somewhere between the hyperrealist canvases of Edward Hopper, Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window, and Jeff Wall’s photographic tableaux.

 

Although Inside Views was created before the pandemic, the images in this series have a particular resonance today as we navigate an ever-changing new normal. Our personalities are shaped by our experiences and social interactions, yet social distancing and quarantine have forced people to exist in solitude, away from the daily interaction with friends, family and colleagues. This exhibition invites us to question and embrace this transition and to find the beauty in the opportunities it presents.

 

Floriane, a native of France, came to New York to study at the International Center of Photography in 2003. She immediately became fascinated by the beauty of the nighttime lights in the “city that never sleeps” and by the proximity created by so many tall buildings built closely together. The idea of posing subjects followed soon after, though it added its share of complications: “Contrary to appearances, the images in my pictures are never superimposed. I like to play with this ambiguity, but everything is there in the moment the shot is taken, which demands a lot of preparation.” The process entails teamwork that draws as much from film as from traditional photography, even if certain pictures turn out “simply” to be self-portraits. Since her first photographs of New York, Floriane has traveled with her large format 4x5 camera to other “key cities” of the 20th century. But in the end, it matters little whether we are in Shanghai, Tokyo, Las Vegas or Istanbul: “The idea is not to create a set of postcards, but to evoke a universal feeling of solitude…

 

The first (sold out) edition of Inside Views has been published in book form by Nazraeli Press in 2008. A complete monography project is in progress for 2021. 

Each photograph is available in Limited Edition of either 5 or 10 and in Small and Large format.

Additional information and work by Floriane here.

125. NEW YORK
125. NEW YORK

Edition of 5 / Digital C-Print on Fuji pearl paper 23x31 inches (Small) / 43x59 inches (Large)

244. BEIJING
244. BEIJING

Edition of 5 / Digital C-Print on Fuji pearl paper 23x30 inches (Small) / 43x59 inches (Large)

5. NEW YORK
5. NEW YORK

Edition of 10 / Digital C-Print on Fuji pearl paper 23x28 inches (Small) / 47x55 inches (Large)

125. NEW YORK
125. NEW YORK

Edition of 5 / Digital C-Print on Fuji pearl paper 23x31 inches (Small) / 43x59 inches (Large)