Artboard 12
Focus On

7.10.2018 - 09H56 by La peau de l’ours


You think you’re seeing the picture and Olivia Descampe tells you imago.

Olivia Descampe puts an image in front of us and it’s a story of origin –recto– and etymology –verso– that comes to us.

Dance With me


Decollages from pictures magazine, faded icons of an era that could be the one of her childhood.

Scrambled characters, with their eyes often torn apart, like incomplete memories relayed on a snow-covered screen by a reception quality parasitized by bad weather.

The recto is the definition of the image because it demonstrates that it is only the visible appearance of a being or a thing, just a particular aspect under which a character appears in a decor.

Memories can wait

But Olivia Descampe invites us to understand that the picture is a false track, a representation by thought, an evocation and a dream. The artist wants to show us that what there is to see is not visible. This is the art of collage whose parts torn or missing seem to be the essential pieces of the puzzle to the understanding of the image.

The artist wants to show us that what there is to see is not visible.


Because “image” originates from Imago, which is the state, after moulting and metamorphosis, of the insect becoming adult and sexual. The purpose of what has been a long process of development before the flight of the butterfly. The image, as a finite element originating from an accumulation of lives.

It is the psychoanalyst Carl Jung who introduced the notion of imago into psychoanalysis to designate the psychic representations, unconscious or not, of being close to the patient. The imago is built from the experiences lived by the child with his relatives who mingle with the cultural context. The imago is an imaginary and original survival that acts as a permanent filter in the relationship with the world.


The verso, the totally hidden part of the image presented, calls to the collective unconscious in its search for an unattainable ideal.

And Olivia Descampe leaves us to see enough elements to transpose our own imagos into her world.

Bruno Plantin-Carrenard