Paul Clemence, Untitled Red, 2015. Installation view at Palazzo Bembo, 2016.

Photo: GAA Foundation

Time Space Existence - Biennale Architettura 2016

Time Space Existence - Biennale Architettura 2016

“Between the click that frames and captures the image and the gaze that glides over the photograph there is a space that is pure movement. There the body dives in and experiences feelings and sensations: the poetic moment, the time of an adventure possible.”
Maria Izabel Campos Pantaleão, Psy.D.
(on Paul Clemence’s photography)

An Interlude: an intermission, a pause, a space. A musical movement weaving together parts of a longer composition. An interlude both gives an interval and links. It separates by connecting. A breathing gap and a passage to what lies ahead. Perception is an interlude, that fleeting moment our senses absorb something (an idea, a space, a feeling) and we connect to it, whether we are conscious of that process or not. My work explores that process as it relates to the built world, the environment that we create to inhabit and live. For the research and articulation of this subjective examination of architecture the chosen medium is photography, the camera itself being an interlude between us and the world at large.
The search for that precise moment of perception leads then to the best expression of that constructed object or space. A revealing detail, a textured surface under the right light, a precise juxtaposition of materials, a spatial flow or dynamic lines of perspective – all are clues to what defines the design and they can be found anywhere. The resulting image may then be many times abstract in character, but not simply for it might suggest a disconnect from something real and of easily identification but rather because it summarizes the essence of the larger whole being looked and experienced.
We relate to architecture on many levels, with different degrees of separation, so to speak. There’s the urban scale, the relation to the context, the building as an object scale, and then there is this human level that is about the closer way we relate to a built form. Whether with a traditionally printed black & white print, or a large-scale photo installation, or a book, it is this more intimate dialogue that my photography engages with.
Atop the iconic Hotel Unique in São Paulo, designed by legendary Brazilian architect Ruy Ohtake, one such interlude occurred. Laying placidly against the background of the bustling metropolis, a lap pool clad in vermillion red. “Color is life”, says Ohtake. And indeed the red tiled grid of the walls, wiggling in playful distortion under the water’s undulating surface, awakens the senses with a jolt. Captured by the camera, that infinitesimal second gains an enduring, timeless duration, extending its reach beyond its origins and enabling its poetic life to exist anytime, anywhere. From Brazil to Venice, and beyond, the moment lives on, the interlude in perpetual continuation.


  • Title: Paul Clemence, Untitled Red, 2015. Installation view at Palazzo Bembo, 2016.
  • Creator: Photo: GAA Foundation

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