|Having carried his lenses on all the world's oceans, from St Malo to cape Horn, Benoît Stichelbaut could have seen his curiosity wear off… but a quick comparative look at his images past and present suffices to prove that it's not the case. His eye seems sharper, his sense of framing more pertinent. What has not changed is his deep intimacy with the seafarers he portrays and captures in action, his ability to anticipate the wave that will submerge the deck, or his sensitivity to the intricate ballet of manoeuvres.
But Benoît also managed to broaden his horizons: landscape artist of the sea and its boats, he wishes to draw from the coastal environment a renewed sense of poetry - cranes of the Brest harbour draped in fog, geometry of the Guérande salt basins, Ar-Men lighthouse weathering the stormy seas… or holiday makers scattered on a North Brittany beach in an unexpected pattern. In order to refine his art, he started exploring new formats such as the subtle discipline of portrait to which he brings his very personal touch, fuelled by his knowledge of men and his desire to go straight to the point. And as sailors often say, the most complicated thing is to try and aim for simplicity