Cinthya Chalifoux is a multidisciplinary visual artist with a fascinating background in fashion, bespoke and textile. You can read more about her intriguing practice in an article here. Recently, she created a breakthrough video “Mask Down” which was transformed into a photographic tryptic. We sat down with the artist to learn more about this beautiful and multi fascinated art piece.
Jano Lapin (JL): What is Mask Down and why?
Cinthya Chalifoux (CC): The Mask Down project unfolds in a video (audio-visual) and photographic format. I enjoyed working with a dear colleague, Marcel Cristocea, who took on the cinematography and photographic images while I conceptualized the project and performed it. The series addresses the connection between mind and body and the layers we wear to control self-image and outside perceptions. As doing so, a part of one’s identity remains hidden until that part recalls its right to be.
JL: It is quite a new work format in your practice, how did you approach the process?
JL: Can you tell us about the photographic series following the digital artwork?
CC: This process was of high interest as it sublimates the narrative behind Mask Down’s video format. I enjoyed playing on the line of relatable archetypes and symbols as creating this photographic series. While the use of archetypes implies collective or social conventions, the following leaves space for personal interpretation. The triptych format shows the following states; “Perfection” shows control in a rigid body position, “Illusion” recalls the sense of loss, identity absence, and confusion, “Vulnerability” shows both sides of a reconnection process. The upper body, curved upon itself, illustrates introspection and resilience, while the strong presence of the grounded leg implies strength and determination.
In all honesty, this photographic format also hints at my previous career as a couturier and image-maker. As an artisan, I worked by hand and achieved prestigious levels of couture craftsmanship. While the series discloses that I lived in the shadow of my work for years, it also contributed to achieving that emotionally charged yet aesthetically pleasing photographic series.
There is beauty in madness; there are also more important things than attaining perfection. A balance should prevail; kindness to self, truth, transparency are modes that sublimate humanity and bring a real sense of meaning to being. The masks we wear do not protect us; they only put an unnecessary distance between us and genuine happiness.
The Mask Down video format is exclusively available in total length within this article below.
Furthermore, the photographic series is available in a limited edition of 20 on the Jano Lapin Gallery website here.
Founder/Editor-in-chief/Creative Director. Passionate about the city of Montreal, discovering its various cultural components as well as exploring foreign places. I am inspired by artists, innovative concepts, philanthropy, creative encounters, and cultural events. View all posts by Anne Jano