Fabien Seguin  photographie


Ultima Natura

is a series that, through the representation of naked bodies in natural environments, questions our relationship to nature and our place within history.

The project was inspired by various elements. Although it somehow echoes to Jorge Luis Borges’s short story “Utopia of a tired man” and to the endings of Michel Houellebecq’s novels The Possibility of an Island and The Map and the Territory, the discovery of these texts took place after the project was finished. The work was mainly my answer to the deep and impossible wish I had to get out of culture, of language and of the common experience of being human. I wanted to create a utopian moment where history and references would be annihilated, where speaking and thinking would be dismissed as irrelevant and actually harmful. This work strives to represent that moment when human beings get rid of language and ideas altogether, when they put an end to history to enter a post-human kind of existence.

From this perspective, the work also puts into question the tradition of the nude. Building on Kenneth Clarke’s distinction between the nude and the naked, it aims at discarding any idealization to represent the naked and defenseless bodies of a post-historic condition.

“In school we are taught doubt and the art of forgetting [...] There is no more chronology or history; no statistics, either [...] Printing, which is now forbidden, was one of the worst evils of mankind, for it tended to multiply unnecessary texts to a dizzying degree [...] “Are there still museums and libraries?” “No. We want to forget the past. There are no commemorations or anniversaries or portraits of dead men. Each person must produce on his own the arts and sciences that he has need for”.”

Jorge Luis Borges, “Utopia of a tired man”, The Book of Sand.