Teen Spirit: Meet Cannes' Legions of "Uninvited" Teen Fans
There are groups of teens who congregate outside of the Grand Théâtre Lumière at the Cannes Film Festival, Carol, even The Sea of Trees, in hopes of gaining entry to one of the many film screenings over the course of the festival. And while most observers have their eyes trained on the red carpet of Cannes, documentary photographer Jennifer Loeber has turned away from what some might consider the main attraction, electing instead to highlight these teens in a series of sensitive portraits entitled Pleasures of the Uninvited. Loeber, who started this project in 2014, is no stranger to documenting the margins of society — “I’ve always found empathy for outliers,” she explains. “Focusing on this overlooked periphery of festival attendees, and the quieter simplicity of their experience, was infinitely more compelling to me.” But to get the kind of candid shots that fill the series, Loeber embedded herself in this ad hoc society, spending the two weeks of the festival waiting in the wings along with her subjects and observing more than documenting; by the time Cannes wrapped, she recalls, she had become one of them and the barriers fell away. “Being a teenager is a bittersweet experience. You start to understand the privileges of the adult world without having the power or authority to access them,” she said. Here, Loeber shares a series of yet-unpublished portraits from the 2015 Pleasures of the Uninvited* series, featuring a selection of sullen, yet dedicated, art house cinema fans (dressed in the festival’s requisite black tie), and not one flash of celebrity.