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From the sky to the earth, the visual artist photographer Manolo Chrétien is fascinated by the effects of gravitation on elements. Atmospheric pressure, deformation of matter, distortion, clouds, currents, winds, waves, fluid dynamics, erosion ... all these terms have accompanied him every day since his birth at the end of a runway at Orange air base in 1966 .

Manolo describes himself thus: "I am an eternal wonderer, who captures the unexpected and composes with an uninterrupted child's gaze ... Fluidity tracker, I’m definitely guided by the ephemeral transformation of the elements".

Gallery & Studio Magazine

From the Ground Up
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Manolo Chrétien,

Manolo Chrétien, b.1966


Manolo was born in Orange, France on a French Air Force base. He graduated from the prestigious ENSAAMA Olivier de Serres, Paris in 1991.


Fascinated by the effect of gravity on earth, he started his artistic career with what he grew up with : aerodynamic and aeronautics in particular, Manolo’s work returns to his childhood memories: a universe made of bright aluminum, hot tarmac and kerosene smells.


It is essential for Manolo to recapture the innocence of his vision as a child and to reveal the wonderment he felt.

In recent years, his work has taken on a more global approach. Fluid dynamics, moving elements, power of nature, all the energies of a world constantly changing. Manolo’s work are considered to be the mirror of human ambition and evolution. He is interested in playing with the purity of forms; as plane designs are so fluid for aerodynamics purposes their outlines tend to be very pure and organic, very close to natural forms. With this, he brings a new and original dimension to photography : from nature to industry there is a possible bridge : being guided and inspired by the purity of nature : birds, waves, vegetal forms . Determined to keep coherence between the subject and material, Manolo uses a technique of fine art print on brushed aluminum, the metal used for the body of planes and cars, and the metallic and dazzling effect you can get when you look at the water backlight. He calls it ‘Aluminations’; a brilliant mix of illuminations, hallucinations and aluminum. 

Critics have recognized Manolo’s works since 1998 with a first series of photographs on the theme of boats ‘Effets Mer’. His 2002 series ‘Juste-Ciel’ was a broad success, followed in 2007 by ‘New York Citillusions’, and « Fusions » since 2010 . Numerous galleries in France, Germany, China, the Netherlands and the UK have exhibited Manolo’s works.

Manolo currently lives and works between Blois, Brittany and Paris


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