On dreamlike and shiny scenes: An interview with Margaux Corda
By CREAM ATHENS | July 30, 2020 12:00 BST
Tell us a bit about yourself, body of work and influences.
I’m a 25 year-old artist/photographer from Lausanne in Switzerland from a Spanish mother and a Swiss-Italian father. My artistic work focuses on the themes of identity, beauty and heritage. As a woman, I am constantly interested in the symbols and representations of gender today as well as the heritage and family baggage that we "receive" as humans. I try to deconstruct these notions in order to better understand them and in my turn be able to reclaim them. All these themes are closely linked for me and I try to make them resonate with each other in each of my works.
How do you use the idea of gender in your work?
Gender is a commun idea that I use as a reference in my work. In “Blade For Babes” the main subject is in mixing and breaking the gender stereotypes by taking certain symbols and clichés to create a satirical criticism. I would like to talk about the superficiality of certain injunctions that continue to feed taboos, and the psychological ill-being that threatens every young person, behind the violence that society imposes on us. The taboos that I, myself lived and still live in hides a lot of unclear messages. My work is based on the body, stereotypes and the physical and psychological pain that these impose. And it is this violence, which I would like to reverse, by showing that resistance is possible, and that it is already coming to life. It is finally starting to come to life through feminist movements around the world as well as strikes, demonstrations and other acts of force in the face of our patriarchal society. I work with everyday objects whose symbolic meaning is no longer questioned. Whether it's the kitchen knife, or the gloss, up to certain commercial children's products.
What beauty means to you?
Beauty for me is something that is constantly changing, something that you enjoy and may share with others. I try to identify beauty everywhere under different forms. I feel that beauty is something very personal and is related with your sensibility and perception of the world. For me even the hideous have their beauty.
How do you relate aesthetics to your practice?
The aesthetics of my practice are light- related. I tend to create an atmosphere which is warm and cosy. There is always something dreamlike and shiny, even when I’m talking about serious and tough subjects. I am convinced that it is through this veil that a melancholy emerges from the images. It is also in this way that the form influences my subject matter, and it is very important for me that the form is the driving force behind the thinking of my projects.
How does your work relate with the theme of identity?
Identity is a theme that is present in almost all my works. In "Blade For Babes" questioning identity is very present because it is based on the feminine vision and diktats through our society. How women construct themselves through the images of feminine figures through the commercial images and media? How it affects us physically and mentally and how this influences our identity as a human being?
Do you think that by challenging conventional views, art can truly make a change in the public’s perception?
Yes, I think art can change the public’s perception but I think it is something that takes time and a lot of work, not only for the artists but the society in general. The public has to be open to question their perception of the world and I think it is something that can be difficult. But the more you see something the more you are able to understand and accept it.
What do you wish every child were taught?
The things I wish every child was taught is tolerance and empathy. I think those faculties are the most important to have happy social interactions and to develop yourself. These faculties develop your open mindedness allowing you to explore new things and point of view.
What is your dream project?
I think my dream project is one that can combine all the subjects I believe in. But I don’t really like the idea of a dream project, because if I do it what is there left to do? I think that my dream project would be more a combination of works that all fit, interact and respond to each other. More like a puzzle and each piece is a different project that all together make another big one.
Name your 3 favourite collaborations.
A collaboration I really enjoyed was with L’Eloquent who is a young musician from Lausanne. We did his future cover for his first solo album where I had a carte blanche to work with so it was really fun. The second one is a collaboration with Juliette Lamy (makeup artist), Evan Benjamin (designers) and Amanda Oliva Cala (stylist) on an editorial shooting. Another one was with Delphineetmoi Production for the clip of Gabriel Tur for his song “Partez Devant” where I did the visuals for the clip and the cover of the song.
What have you been working on at the moment? What’s next?
I have been working on "Blade for Babes" since the beginning of this year but it is still very fresh and I am continuing the series with other images coming from a more political perspetive. Another series I am working on for a while is "Face", a project that questions identity under the prism of standardisation.
Using neutral masks, collecting and comparing them, I very quickly noticed differences within this neutrality. Although they are supposed to be generic, they are all different from each other, which destroys the idea of the 'generic' and 'standard'. How each mask interferes with the identity code present on my face? How the mask translates into a new face and thus potentially a new identity on the person who wears it? How this new form blurs and takes over my face and my identity?