Xavier Tozzi Fontana was born in Italy and grew up in a little village called Brisighella, near Bologna. He’s half Italian and half French and moved to Paris when he was 18 to study History of Cinema at the Sorbonne. Xavier makes short movies, music videos for his band and takes photographs, principally on film.
How did the idea for the series with you girlfriend Eloïse come about?
I discovered these atypically coloured buildings in Paris at the start of the summer. I became curious about them because I thought that nobody could live or work there and they seemed to be made for a movie. In fact they reminded me of Giorgio de Chirico’s paintings, his metaphysical deserted places and architectures. So I had the idea to ask Eloïse to enter this solitary and surrealistic set, summer dressed. I played with the idea of integrating her in it through a statuary position, and to create a contrast between the movements of her body and this overwhelming place.
Can we photograph the female body differently in a more powerful way?
I think that photography and arts in general can show everything. In this case I think I made Eloïse body’s powerful, by associating her to a powerful set and by her static posture. I wanted to show her beauty in this way.
What inspires you?
My first passion is cinema, as a spectator and as a moviemaker, thus I’m attracted to take pictures that are cinematic or where I see a possible story.
How would you define beauty?
It’s too complicated to define what beauty is. I think it’s both universal and personal. Beauty is what I personally consider beautiful (laughing). By this I mean that everybody can see in any art piece, in any picture, a different interpretation and vision of their own beauty.
Film or digital?
Both but I prefer film.
What makes you happy and what’s next for you?
I feel happy when I create images and compositions that didn’t exist before in photographs, drawings, songs or in short films I make. I would like to be a director of photography, so I study cinema to achieve this goal of mine. I’m about to release some short movies and photography projects, and in January, a demo of my band will be coming out.