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Creative Fields
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BJ IS THE LIGHT, RICHEILLE THE PIGMENT. Richeille is the virtual image; BJ the physical act. Neither is only themself; each is also the continuation of the other. One is the the beginning , the other the end. BJ is not Richeille. Richeille is not BJ. BJ needs Richeille, Richeille needs BJ. Two people that fo… Read More
BJ IS THE LIGHT, RICHEILLE THE PIGMENT. Richeille is the virtual image; BJ the physical act. Neither is only themself; each is also the continuation of the other. One is the the beginning , the other the end. BJ is not Richeille. Richeille is not BJ. BJ needs Richeille, Richeille needs BJ. Two people that form a single entity.
Their collaboration is a declaration of love. Two singularly, provocative, glamorous artists seeking ways of expressing themselves, one through photography, the other through creative direction. Alone, the narrative is impossible to recount. Of necessity, their artistic story takes the form of a dialogue. Everything they do is based on fusion: corporal, spiritual and artistic. Everything they do depends on exchange, balance, harmony. Everything begins with BJ's photography, in the frozen instant that will never return, in the fire of creation, immediacy of emotion; and ends in Richeille's creative direction, in her slow, reflective, patient composition. Read Less
Circumstance
“the world is full of fictional characters
looking for their stories.”

-Diane Arbus

In wake of the recent economic slump, husband and wife team BJ and Richeille Formento, took an exciting turn with their most personal collection of photography to date. "Circumstance" is their tragic yet romantic, cinematic po… Read More
“the world is full of fictional characters
looking for their stories.”

-Diane Arbus

In wake of the recent economic slump, husband and wife team BJ and Richeille Formento, took an exciting turn with their most personal collection of photography to date. "Circumstance" is their tragic yet romantic, cinematic portrayal of a depressing time. The project is both ironic and haunting, exploring issues of identity and the transient state of people and places in one moment of decision (or utter lack there of).

In November 2009, the Formento's packed their home and 3 Siamese cats into their 27 foot silver air stream and began their epic cross country adventure. Armed with a small budget for everything from gas to styling, the plan was bare bones: 5 months, 25 states and 50 women. With just the two of them to produce, style and shoot the entire production, their objective was not only to create stunning new work but to balance the fine line between commercialism and fine art with a heightened social consciousness.

With only Google as their travel guide, the two embraced the open road, constantly scouting locations, meeting women then photographing them on that very same day. Although the images are staged, the stories behind them could not be more real, with the "models" and locations often supplying the artists with a place to stay for the night. Living through their work in such a way meant they were able to capture both the fragile state of the economy and society's emotional state of uncertainty, careful to preserve their "quality on a budget" ethos.

The artists pay homage to the cinematography of Hitchcock, with influence from feminist photographer Cindy Sherman, as well as realist painter Edward Hopper. Sherman’s scandalous approach to photographic narrative is merged with Old Hollywood thriller romance. BJ focuses camera lens on the eyes of the heroine, while Richielle constructs reflections of persona in the landscape. Together they develop the missing story of the Hitchcock damsel in distress, retracing iconic trails through our “land of the free,” displaying mastery of light fit for the festering of darkest drama and doubt in both subject and you, most prized audience. Hopper’s theme of solitude and introspection on the modern American landscape seems magically transferred from canvas to photograph. "Circumstance" encompasses the tributes of Hitchcock, Sherman and Hopper at new altitudes, personifying American Beauty as vulnerable yet strong enough to give face to an alluring soul-searching calmness.

Although location and heroine are specific to each shot, the emotional edge caught on camera is universal. The project evolves on the fringe of fact and fiction into hybrid montage, notice ravaged homes in New Orleans to shabby shelters off the beaten path where perverse tranquility, curious beauty, may be found. BJ recounts his initial aspirations: “I really wanted to shoot something that hit home with the audience, we have been going through this recession and people were losing homes, losing their families. I wanted work to show that.”

In this first phase of a cross-cultural trilogy, the artists hope that you may see with your own eyes the paradox of tragic beauty tangled in webs of domestic abuse, mental illness and homelessness. In documenting the in-between moments, the unspoken for thoughts and tension, BJ and Richielle Formento seek to challenge stereotypical portraits of feminine identity that perpetuate destruction of a healthy sense of Self. Read Less
about us
BJ + Richeille Formento

Chronology

1964 BJ born, Honolulu, Hawaii, Filipino descent

1975 Richeille born, London UK

Education

1982-1986 Academy of Arts University, California, BFA in Photography

1996-1998 Central St Martins College of Art, BA hons Graphic Design

BJ moved to NYC 1999 and assisted Richar… Read More
BJ + Richeille Formento

Chronology

1964 BJ born, Honolulu, Hawaii, Filipino descent

1975 Richeille born, London UK

Education

1982-1986 Academy of Arts University, California, BFA in Photography

1996-1998 Central St Martins College of Art, BA hons Graphic Design

BJ moved to NYC 1999 and assisted Richard Avedon, Mary Ellen Mark, Annie Leibovitz and studied under Eugene Richards and Arnold Newman. Since 2001 he has set out on his own and has shot for numerous magazines and advertising clients as well as continued to mature in his personal work.

Richeille worked as an art director and designer within the fashion industry, working for a large umbrella company responsible for visually communicating new season looks on all graphic works and brands like Calvin Klein, Diesel, DKNY and various other independent fashion labels.

The two met on a job in 2005 and got married 3 months later. Since then they have started a photo library called Eyecandy Images which is distributed worldwide. They continue to grow and foster their love for photography both in the commercial and fine art world. Read Less
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