Jean-Marc Bustamante Interview: The Notion of Landscape

“I think art is not very useful, it’s a question of what you feel.” Watch the acclaimed French artist and photographer Jean-Marc Bustamante, who merges photography and painting, and whose starting point is always the concept of landscape.

Photography, Bustamante feels, is good for showing a selection of reality “but it’s paper, two-dimensional, sometimes a little bit poor, less decorative than a painting, it has less physical presence than a sculpture.” He therefore likes to play with different disciplines and uses various techniques for altering the photograph such as correcting the colours to bring out magenta tones: “The weight of the image gives something related with life, death, memory… and suddenly it’s something much more hazy and attractive, and it’s not a photograph anymore, it’s something more. So the technique adds something to the image, and I like that.”

Bustamante always considers the notion of landscape – also in his private life: “The landscape is a frame, but with many things inside. So I like to use landscape as a metaphor, also in life.” He considers a problem like he would consider a landscape – how you can transform it, add or remove something from it. Coming from photography, he adds, he has a tendency to “see the world inside a frame.”

Jean-Marc Bustamante (b. 1952) is a French artist, painter, sculptor and photographer. A noted conceptual and installation artist, Bustamante has incorporated ornamental design and architectural space in his work. Bustamante’s first paintings based off of photographs marked the beginning of this medium in the art field. He is known to experiment with a wide variety of media, creating innovative visual suggestions. Bustamante’s work is in the collection of prominent museums worldwide, in example CAPC – Musée d’art Contemporain in Bordeaux, Centre Pompidou in Paris, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, Kunsthalle Bern in Bern, Tate Britain in London and The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Solo exhibitions include Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh, Kunsthaus Bregenz and Yokohama Museum of Art in Yokohama, Japan. In 2003, Bustamante represented France at the Venice Biennale and he has participated in Documenta 8, 9 and 10. He lives and works in Paris where he is also the director of Les Beaux-Arts de Paris.

Jean-Marc Bustamante was interviewed by Roxanne Bagheshirin Lærkesen at Galleri Susanne Ottesen in Copenhagen in October 2017.

Images shown in the video: Courtesy of the artist and Galleri Susanne Ottesen.

Camera: Jakob Solbakken
Cover photo: ‘S.I.M 1.99, Something is Missing’ (1999) by Jean-Marc Bustamante
Produced and edited by: Roxanne Bagheshirin Lærkesen
Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2018

Supported by Nordea-fonden



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