Andrea Barbier is a Louisiana based photographer who specializes in the French alternative photographic technique, mordançage. She received her BFA in Photography in 2004 from Savannah College of Art and Design, and finished her MFA in Studio Art from Louisiana State University in 2014. She has worked as a camera educator, art gallery director, and freelance photographer. She lives in Baton Rouge with her husband, Josh, and their son, Indie. 

About the process:

The process of mordançage (French for etching or bleach) was developed in the 1960’s by Jean-Pierre Sudre, a Parisian relocated to the Provincial village of Lacoste, France. Sudre, who originally studied film, was known for his chemical experimentation in photography and later, the workshops he held at his home. During one of Sudre’s workshops, Craig Stevens, an American photographer, learned the process and brought it back to the United States. A faculty member of Savannah College of Art and Design, and of both the Maine and Santa Fe workshops, Stevens has introduced the mordançage technique to students ever since. 

The creation of a mordançage image must begin with a silver gelatin print. The print is submerged into a combination of chemicals that lift the darkest areas of the emulsion, allowing for manipulation of the surface and the redistribution or removal of underlying silver salts. Barbier creates her imagery from digital photographs, and contact prints them in the darkroom using digital negatives. She manipulates the final prints with paintbrush and water to achieve her final one-of-a-kind results.