The work of Tom Callemin (°1991, Ostend, works in Ghent) derives from the question what it means to take
a picture of someone or something. For this purpose he’s not in search of images in reality but he tries to
reconstruct certain memories. Mostly dark photographs with little or no colors evoke an uncanny and
silenced mood that is not fixed in time and space. The protagonists that inhabit his photographs seem to be
caught up in thoughts and withdrawn in their own world. His images construct an experience. It’s about the
evocation of an enigmatic instant on which the spectator can’t get a hold. 
In the different photographic works one can recognize different strategies used by the artist to approach the
core question about the role of the photographer. In this way he examines, among other things, the limits of
portrait photography. The interaction between the photographer and the model is the central theme. Which
roles can the photographer adopt? How can he engage in this interaction? In this way the artist tries to
portray a person who is not involved in the photographic game of looking and being looked at. Callemin
makes his models pose in the dark. Once they are fully relaxed and they forget the presence of the
photographer, their picture is made with harsh flashlight. In this way he tries to make an unaware and sincere
recording. Yet the role he plays in the registration of this fair moment is ambiguous, his influence on the final
result is significant. The artist never works with snapshots but directs every little aspect in the image
meticulously. The harsh flashlight reveals the controlled spontaneity. This relates to the noticeable influence
of theatre and cinema, in the way the subject is depicted and in the way in which the artist reconstructs
certain events and memories. He diverges every form of narrativity. He rather attempts to isolate a
concentrated moment, a long stretched non-moment, frozen in time and space. 
His works are not divided in series but are autonomous and generate new interpretations with every
combination. What holds the images together is the mechanism of looking.
In every work a new situation is shown to the photographer, and thus to the spectator. Something that seems
to be be covered, was not for us to be seen. The act of seeing becomes a confrontation that tends to be
voyeuristic, even violent. Other images show something that is displayed for us to be seen and poses
questions about the purpose of displaying a subject to the eye. 
With the contribution of Ann Cesteleyn


Tom Callemin : Levallois Award

26.11.2015 - 28.11.2015


Born in 1991, Belgium





Master en Arts Plastiques (Photographie) à la School of Arts Ghent






- Hinterland, Kaai salon, Bruges



- Expo, Frigo, Ghent (solo)





- Ellipse by 2112 Collective, Tokyo Wonder Site, Japan (group)

- The New Portrait part I, Stieglitz 19, Antwerp (group)

- Het grote ongeduld extra, Cinematek, Brussels (group)

- Kunstenfestival Watou (group)

- De Burgemeester van Veurne, Emergent, Veurne (group)



- Angst essen Seele auf, KASK, Ghent (group)

- Stimulans, Paardenstallen Broelmuseum, Courtrai (group)

- Graduation, School of Arts, Ghent (group)

- Best Regards, Quai des Arts, Ghent (group)

- Unseen, .TIFF, Amsterdam (group)

- BredaPhoto, Breda (group)

- Bougie Art Foundation, Amsterdam (group)

- Angst essen Seele auf, FH Bielefeld, Germany (group)

- Solstice Hiver, These Things Take Time, Ghent (duo)



- Tears of Melancholy, collaboration with Anouk Declercq, Klarafestival, Flagey, Brussels



- Input/Output, De Bond, Bruges (group)



- Sample 30/09/10, Recyclart, Brussels (group)

- Lineart, The Border, Flanders Expo Ghent (group)

- Night has a 1000 eyes, 44 Gallery, Bruges (duo)





De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam, 2015



Selected for Input/output, Bruges, 2011

Price Stichting Stad Ghent, 2014

Honourable mention, Stimulans, Courtrai, 2014

Laureate Prix Levallois, 2015




.TIFF Magazine, FOMU, BE

Volkskrant, NL

Kunstenaarspagina H ART #, BE

Foam Talent Magazine, NL

Vrij Nederland, NL



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La photo à l'état pur


Connaissance des Arts