Frijke Coumans

“Gardeners of Desire”
The title “Gardeners of Desire” suggests a “makeability” of what we desire, and thus contradicts the photographs and the text. I see my photographs as containing what cannot be comprehended into our self-designed system.
Agitation in my head and unanswered questions do not fit in harmonious and controlled environments. Unanswered questions represent a need, and fuel my project and correspond to desire. The series is full of chaos, not-knowing, impressions and questions, lead by an apparent “makeability” born in the mind, which however cannot be controlled.
That which you cannot comprehend, that which withdraws itself from you, feels like an emptiness that needs to be filled. Desire always implies a need: at the moment that the need is met, the desire has gone.
“Makeability” doesn’t result automatically in satisfaction. Often, I have no idea what I want, and it is precisely the unexpected that makes the days special. The satisfaction of control is short and kills our imagination. Imagination is essential in desire.

I’m a photographer graduated in Photography at the Academy of Art and Design St.Joost in Breda. I’m intrigued by the difficult relation between the desire for control and balance, and the desire for chaos and irrationality. I find these seemingly contradictory desires amazing and strikingly present in everyday life. I’m investigating the gap between my inner feelings and my thoughts, and always looking for ways to unite them in my photography.

I think the power of images is that they can portray what we cannot really comprehend with words. Images provide a totally different way of understanding and exposing reality and all those complex and infinite others around us. Inspired by Emmanuel Levinas and Friedrich Nietzsche I’m investigating my surroundings, my own behaviour and assumptions, and try to turn these into new experiences: the experience is the only certainty.