“Eléonore Saintagnan has a penchant for stories. Whether true or apocryphal, collective or individual, arising from popular traditions or individual obsessions, anything goes when it comes to recreating these tales in the form of videos and installations. Like the librarian dreamed up by Richard Brautigan (The abortion, 1971), in charge of collecting unpublished manuscripts, day and night, Éléonore Saintagnan’s work hosts stories that have not found a space elsewhere, usually stories that are on the margins of History and otherwise fated to disappear. With a background in creative documentary, the artist freely combines live capture, staged situations and archive documents, placing herself in the thick of a reality that is conceived as hybrid, made up of events that we live and stories that we tell. Whether human or animal, communities are great generators of stories. Hence Saintagnan’s interest in them, especially when these stories have an anecdotal, wacky side. ”Sarah Ihler-Meyer
After studying fine arts and documentary cinema, Eléonore Saintagnan graduated from Studio national du Fresnoy (2006-2008) then Bruno Latour’s SPEAP master’s degree at Sciences Po Paris (2011). In 2010, she received the Curator’s Prize at the Montrouge salon.
Her work has been shown in group exhibitions in France and abroad like Folklore? at CRAC Alsace, or Un-scene II at Wiels in Brussels as well as in film festivals such as FID Marseille, Hors Pistes at Center Pompidou, or DOC Fortnight at MoMA in New York. In 2014, she went into residence in the Ouessant semaphore; then in 2015, at the Seoul MMCA via the French Institute. In 2018, her film A girl from Ouessant won the best short film award at Visions du Réel in Nyons, Switzerland. She got the Isère Contemporary Art Prize with a residency in Moly-Sabata.
After personal exhibitions in a module of the Palais de Tokyo, at the Galerie Elaine Levy in Brussels, at Néon in Lyon, at Mains d´œuvres in Saint-Ouen (Dieu et la Stéréo, 2014), her first big solo show, L’oeuf pondu deux fois, was set last winter at La Criée Contemporary art center, in Rennes.