Papa : « Tell me a story, Gabriel.» Gabriel : « Dad, Mom, Eugénie, Pauline...» (personal audio record, 1988)
The story told here May have never happen. Itâ€™s always the same thing A story of banality. It looks like winter. Everything is a fiction
Christmas Eveâ€™s sunset In the Dinnig room Things look like slow But the pale light dazzles. You may remember the atmosphere But not the people there.
It is as if Mom and Dad never met. But they did. They had a daughter named Pauline On that day, Mom’s bed was covered by newspapers. Viet Nam war was over. Dad drove through the streets, yealing « I am a Dad now ! ».
She made the couple turn into a family.
It is hard to imagine Pauline As a little girl. The are only pictures To make this become possible
There were just Mom, Dad and Pauline. Dad put a swing-set inside of the apartment, Between his office and her bedroom.
Then EugĂŠnie was born, during November 79. She arrived earlier than expected. Time was missing and nobody took any a picture.
During those nights, feeding EugĂŠnie, Dad and her learned to know eachother From that time, it was hard for him to sleep.
Pictures build a memory That belongs to nobody You get the feeling that you remember moments That you never experienced. Dad and Momâ€™s bedroom ; Our house,our street, Our own room...
This period, when you to not yet exist Seems to be an endless winter You do not know where Light, Clouds, Trees, Up And down Come from.
Thus, that weird universe is not
Winter became colder.
It began snowing, on a Tuesday Morning I do not remember.
My world became full of people.
Knowing the day of my birth, Dad said : ÂŤ just like me Âť.
It was in March. For his Birthday, Dad had a baby boy. And on that very day English mlinors ended their one-year-strike.
An evening Eugénie asked, if my name was Gabriel Because, fom inside Mom’s belly, i was praying : « Hail Mary...»
On pictures, bath or baptism are not different Each event of this life is abstract...
You do not recognize the faces.
Winter was ending.
Winterâ€™s leafs, branchs and trees Were still burning In the garden.
So we went outside.
Pictures : Gabriel Coutagne and family pictures Layout and postproduction, Texts and Translation by Gabriel Coutagne. Printed in April 2011. Originally edited in June 2010, ENSLL (French National School for Photography, Film and Sound), Paris, France. Printed on My 360Â° Edit White 100 gsm on Laser process.
ÂŠ Gabriel Coutagne 2011.