I’ve always been a fan of “behind the scenes” television shows and documentaries. To me, watching a classic film or looking at a masterpiece hanging on a gallery wall is immediately enhanced upon learning about the story behind the art (see The Burnt Orange Heresy). In Queen of Paradis, filmmaker Carl Lindstrom goes behind the scenes with his wife and artist, Reine Paradis, as she prepares for his second art exhibition.
Reine Paradis from out of nowhere burst on the scene in 2016 with her first series of photographs she called Jungle. Her minimalistic images featured a bright white structure, like a building or a pool, a gorgeous orange figure, and sometimes an origami-shaped creature, also in orange. The series was so captivating that it sold out in just one night.
“The series was so captivating that it sold out in just one night.”
Today, Lindstrom follows Reine around with a camera as she prepares her second series called Midnight and finds herself in a bit of a rush to make the publicized opening night in Los Angeles. In Midnight, Paradis takes her trademark elements and produces a new series under the dark blue moon of midnight. She becomes the figure in each image and wearing fluorescent yellow with translucent neon green props.
To get each image, she sketches her concept with simple pen and paint, then to her own peril scouts locations across the country, finding the setting that perfectly fits in the image in her mind. Many of the sites are difficult to get to like a mountain of salt in a quarry. It’s possible in some locations, she may or may not have permission to shoot. Some sites are also far out of the way on the sandy beach dunes in the middle of nowhere. It’s her composition, whimsy, and eye for color, which immediately draws your attention to her work.