charles pétillon erupts balloon invasions from urban landmarks
(above) ‘souvenirs de famille’
all images © charles pétillon




‘invasion’ is a word not often associated with the presence of balloons — we usually regard them as weightless, whimsical orbs hovering in mid-air and unrestrained by physical boundaries. charles pétillon turns this idea on its head, containing bundles of white, inflated balls within architectural spaces, neighborhoods and natural landscapes. the french photographer considers each photo in his series a metaphor for either a period of time, an emotional sensation, or universal urban evolution. they aim to change the point-of-view that we encounter everyday, and move our idea from practical perception to visual recognition. ‘invasions’ is presented from february 20 to march 22, 2015 at maison de la photographie, paris.



‘invasions de ballons’
video courtesy of




‘invasions’ provides a look at architectural decay — a structure that once symbolized the future is facing obsolescence and disappearance. balloons billow out from the domed building, breathing new life into the historic constrcution. the video above provides a look at pétillon’s process in the making of the image.

charles pétillon invasions balloons




‘play station 2’ bears the image of balloons flooding through an empty basketball net, the name which obviously references the famous game console and its role the video game universe. ‘the purpose of this photo is to question the viewer on the uses of games in all forms, their evolution and their influence in society’ pétillon describes. 

charles pétillon invasions balloons
‘play station 2’




‘the formula ‘CO2′ is one of the mirages of society’ pétillon describes, ‘its use has become a constraint that it is difficult to separate.’ this image is a metaphor for the infinity of the individual, and the collective, daily scars we leave on the world.

charles pétillon invasions balloons




the string of balloons floating within the forest represents an amplification of the molecular structure of DNA. as a symbol of genetic modifications, ‘mutation 2’ serves as metaphor for the stigma left by man in nature.

charles pétillon invasions balloons
‘mutation 2’