The notion that the state of humanity can be read and studied by the way we relate to animals is a vital thread in Dumas work. Her choice of subject relates directly to the way we use, co-exist with, and define specific animals, assigning various symbolisms to them as well as our own personal reflections.
It is her belief that the disappearance of the actual presence of animals as a given in our society greatly affects how we experience life and for example our ability to be empathetic with one another.
The gap that currently exists between animals used and seen as a food resource on one hand and the anthropomorphic use of them on the other (as they are also often depicted in visual language) contributes to an increasingly contradictory relationship. When it comes to animal topics, emotions often run high. It seems the less we are in direct contact with them, the more we lose the perspective of their true capacity and what they mean to us and we to them.
Dumas has been observing different animals, mostly horses and dogs, within specific positions for over a decade. she is particularly interested in the complexity of how we define value when it comes to animals as well as how we attribute value to our selves and others. The context of her subjects is what defines each subject.
Charlotte Dumas has held numerous solo exhibitions at venues throughout the world, including Museum De Pont, Tilburg (2015) The Photographers' Gallery in London (2015), Gallery 916 Tokyo (2016 and 2014), Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC (2012), FO.KU.S., Innsbruck (2010), Foam Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam (2009) and, most recently, the exhibition Stay at andriesse eyck galerie.