FOREST 5 series of 6 c-prints 100 x 100 cm each, 2004
Tatiana Lecomte's work has something enigmatic about it. It initially appears very clear what is to be seen, but then the apparently familiar immediately and mysteriously becomes a source of doubt. However what constitutes the unsettling quality of these photographs is not entirely comprehensible. Something uncanny, as yet unfathomed and concealed radiates from Lecomte's work.
The memory which encompasses subconscious associations and attempted reconstructions is "impossible", according to Chris Marker, because it can only be incompletely reconstructed consciously – a memory with gaps, over which somebody has no control. The prerequisite for the "impossible" memory is work on the memory that integrates the difference between the chronology of historical dates and the contents of the individual and the collective memory – in which the images of horror are subject to amnesia – in the attempts at historical reconstruction.
The specific quality of Tatiana Lecomte's work lies in the apparent contradiction between the heightened and charged value of the statement, which is based in the precision of the composition and the photographer's explicitly un-stage managed analogue approach. Lecomte describes herself as searching in her work; her approach is more one of phenomenological, subjective reflection. However she succeeds in conveying to the observant eye what is being sought, or more what is suspected, by the selection of the image and the precise technical execution of the photographs. The sense of unease is not only generated by what is shown in the image but also by the precise technical realisation of the given possibilities.
Associations are conjured-up that, following an unfathomable thread, ring bells in our culturally coded visual inner archives and activate a narrative that finds its unknown continuation in the 'reading' of a filmic strip. [...]
Melanie Ohnemus, in: Reading in Abscence. Tatiana Lecomte, Romana Schmalisch, dreizehnzwei, Vienna 2006. Translation: Jonathan Quinn