Léonie Hampton (1978) is a French photographer living in London, whose interest in photography evolves around the family subject. She portrays her mother who suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder. Because of this condition the house where the mother has lived since her divorce, after 12 years still looks like a warehouse as opposed to a cosy home. The photographer helps her mother to put everything in order and as a result a family album In the Shadow of Things is created. In this work among many other emotions spectators can detect joy, confusion, nostalgia, as well as reflection on the issues of identity. The photographer has also investigated the fates of other families in France, Cuba, America and Great Britain.
What does photography mean to you?
The possibility to express, explore and create.
How would you describe your working manner? What is the most intimate step in your photography process?
Quiet. Obsessive. Curious. The most intimate step is turning to photograph my own family’s life as directly as I am capable of at present.
Your interest is focused on the family subject. Why have you chosen this matter?
It is what primarily interests me. I am fascinated by the family dynamics and the complex psychology of people. The family is a potent place to try to understand more about such things.
Has the work you have done on your family changed your artistic perspective? How?
Of course. I feel more confident in my own work and the direction I want to take. It makes me
excited to see what work I will do next. I imagine and hope that the work I have done has helped shed a few layers of guise and that I maybe more direct in my approach to new subjects. Let’s see!
Please, share a beautiful story from the creative/shooting process!
I think it is a wonderful privilege that working in the creative field can be deeply cathartic and therapeutic and in turn help clear your eyes to see that there is much beauty around you.