Visual poet Alexandra Stefanakis makes colour shimmer in unison with the jazz musicians she listens to and photographs. By producing her works using the gum bichromate method, digitally enhancing them and printing them on Velin d’Arches fine art paper, she intensifies their graininess and plays with rich, velvety colour effects. Her lens captures the music at the moment when it is created, as it is performed, in the emotion of the instant. Her reworked prints move the musical notes from the ear to the eye, beyond the initial shot. Sounds then resonate with images and become literally chromatic, forming part of an astonishing visual score. Archie Shepp's sax assumes subtle shades of blue (and shades of the Blues). Dizzy Gillespie's trumpet blasts out unique harmonies. Vibrant hues rock Pat Metheny's guitar. Alexandra Stefanakis manages to combine different artistic worlds whilst constantly reinventing her own: that of contemporary photography, where technology does not impinge on painterliness and where music sets the tempo.
Alexandra Stefanakis (b.1962) lives and works in France. She began her career in the mid 1980s. Her work initially focused on fashion and advertising and then moved towards a more personal style in reportage pieces on the world of music and portraits of musicians. She has won a number of awards, including the prestigious Prix Polaroid de la Technique and the Prix de l’Agence Synergie du Reportage, which she received from Jean Loup Sieff in 1983.