Lore Stessel (°1987) graduated as Master in Fine Arts (Sint-Lukas Brussels, 2009) and Master in photography (École Nationale Supérieure de la Photographie Arles, 2012). Her artistic practice is essentially a questioning of the relationship between painting and photography. How can painting and photography be reconciled? How can they confront and even oppose each other? The work of Lore Stessel is about attraction and repulsion of these two media, about the one being indispensable to the other. A major part of her acti-vities are in the dark room of her workspace, where she paints with photosensitive emulsion on stretched canvas. On these surfaces she projects the photonegative, and subsequently pours over developer. She guides which parts of the image will become visible, paying close attention as the image develops. This complex process causes unforeseen effects and coincidences, such as stains and colour shifts, which renders unique images. Some of these effects Stessel embraces, while others she undoes. As such, an interesting dialogue is developing between the hand of the artist and technical matters.
Her subjects are often (about) people with attention to the physical or something that man leaves behind. Stessel loves the beauty of everyday actions, small gestures and the grace of movements. She does not stage anything but is guided by details and personal impressions. Her images are no testimony of reality; they rather translate a state of mind, where neither time nor place is important. With the technique and use of materials Stessel emphasises that her images are just a representation of reality – between abstraction and representation, between object and material.
-Fragments of text – Indra Devriendt, april 2017