Myths know no frontiers. The Elvis legend far outsteps the gilt and hangings of Graceland, in Memphis Tennessee. In fact, it is just as alive on the side of the Atlantic, in Porthcawl, a small town in South Wales that holds a festival in honour of the King in September each year. Between Tennessee and Wales the fans bear an uncanny resemblance to each other, all clones of a double-chinned idol with his slicked-back quiff, all children of the zone and the stack of money, all laying claim to the fat belly and the kitsch of the parvenu idol. With their petrol-blue shirts and billowing skirts, these doubles of Elvis and Priscillia act out the same sweet dream, one clinking with glory and posterity. Nothing in these images by Clémentine Schneidermann gives any hint which side of the Atlantic we are on and it is the miracle of these photographs located midway between fiction and document that highlights a planet Elvis, which inhabited by sad faced people who show the marks of life and yet who invent radiant destinies for themselves, far beyond the misfortunes of fate and the shattered globe of the day-to-day.
Text by Natacha Wolinski