Tales from the North
A magic journey into the Nord-Pas-de-Calais (France)
With his photographic narrative "Tales from the North," Romain Ruiz unveils a visual narrative in which everyday life becomes fantasy.
The Nord-Pas-de-Calais is his native region and is where he decided to create his first photographic creations. With certain local traditions already being widely publicized, he explores the everyday life of big cities and the small villages in the region; he has traveled down lanes, some of which have an almost non-existent iconographic history. Today, Romain invites us to discover and explore them together.
It's here, in the midst of a colorful population, that he saw himself emerge; this is where Romain chose to give birth to this photographic series. With "Tales from the North" the young photographer reveals his desire to show that in every man, in every woman, and regardless of their age, that every human being has the heart of a child. Whatever their destiny may have been, each one of them will always carry within them the child they once were.
And what do children do? - They dream, create characters and then live them emotionally to the very core of their being. So, against wondrous landscapes or small street corners, Romain invites us to enter their fantasies, their dreams, and to hear their tales.
Even if his compositions are created in an instant, they are not left to chance.
Instead, Romain likes to hold on to the surrealist border that forms a visual layering of reality mixed with fantasy. So it is not uncommon for Romain's images to show both the commercial signs and logos of our consumer-driven world, with, as if they were slipping away from him through magical dreams, characters brimming with humor, absurdity, and the extravagance of everyday life.
It is during these moments - like a flash of lightning - that Romain photographs his characters at the exact moment of their existence where each and everyone creates his own phantasmagoria. This privileged moment when, just like that, he transforms his everyday life.
It is precisely these moments - these moments suspended between everyday life and fantasy that Romain captures, tames, and anchors these images for the public. Yet, at the same time, they are naturally fleeting moments, perhaps even erased at the very moment from the memories of those who have experienced them.