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HomeContentsThemes > Street: Classic French examples

Contents

Introduction
391.01   The humanism of street photography in France
Photographers
391.02   Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Decisive Moment
391.03   Classic French street photography
391.04   André Kertész: Street photography in Paris
391.05   Robert Doisneau: Humanistic photography
This theme includes example sections and will be revised and added to as we proceed. Suggestions for additions, improvements and the correction of factual errors are always appreciated. 
  
Status: Collect > Document > Analyse > Improve
 
  
Introduction 
  
391.01   Street >  The humanism of street photography in France 
  
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Different countries have artistic styles that reflect national sensitivities and France has had a remarkable group of photographers who have recorded life with humanity and humor - just looking at the photographs one is sucked into other people's lives. Robert Doisneau, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Jacques-Henri Lartique[1] have shown all strata of society but they are not the portraits of alienated people passed in the street as Garry Winogrand[2] would take them - here the photographer captures the rich small intimate moments of people's lives. Photographers such as Brassaï (Translyvanian born) and André Kertész (Hungarian) who adopted France for periods of their lives also reflected this approach. 
  
Photographers 
  
391.02   Street >  Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Decisive Moment 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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These photographers roamed the streets looking for a single moment that would sum up the entirety of an event, emotion or person. Henri Cartier-Bresson came up with the phrase 'the decisive moment'[3] that summed up this quest:
"Above all, I craved to seize the whole essence, in the confines of one single photograph, of some situation that was in the process of unrolling itself before my eyes..."
The French photographers are particularly interesting as they appear to be non-judgmental and are not about changing society but rather about recording it's diversity. It is the very humanity and joy in the images that makes them so universal. 
  
391.03   Street >  Classic French street photography 
  
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There are so many timeless images from street photography in France that selected iconic examples is difficult but one should include: These are timeless images reprinted in the classic histories of photography and hung as posters on the walls of students around the world. Basically they show humanity with humor and warmth. When in 1952 the book The Decisive Moment (Images a La Sauvette) came out with the photographs of Henri Cartier-Bresson it became apparent that there was a mass market for this type of photography. They were creators of a trend towards a more ironic type of photography that evolved with the optimism and freedoms of the 1950's in the USA and western Europe - this included people like John Deakin (1916-1972) in the UK, or the Swiss-born Robert Frank in his book The Americans that was based on the images he took during his 1955 Guggenheim grant. 
  
391.04   Street >  André Kertész: Street photography in Paris 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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André Kertész was Hungarian by birth[4] and arrived in Paris in September 1925 at a time of immense cultural ferment. He was one of a group of Hungarian photographers who were active in France including François Kollar, Robert Capa, Emeric Fehér, Brassaï, Julia Bathory. Man Ray, Germaine Krull and Lucien Aigner. He stayed in Paris and worked for numerous magazines including Vu, Le Sourire, Arts et Métiers Graphiques and Art et Médecine. His work during this period of street photography of the inter-war period was a significant element in his overall work.[5] As war became more likely Kertész left France in 1936 to settle in New York
  
391.05   Street >  Robert Doisneau: Humanistic photography 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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Footnotes 
  
  1. Λ Jacques-Henri Lartigue, 1966, Boyhood Photos of J. H. Lartigue: The Family Album of a Gilded Age, (Lausanne, Switzerland: Ami Guichard); Martine D’Astier, Quentin Bajac & Alain Saya, 2003, Lartigue: Album of a Century, (New York: Harry N. Abrams) 
      
  2. Λ For the most complete overview on Garry Winogrand - Sarah Greenough, Erin O'Toole, Tod Papageorge, Sandra S. Phillips & Leo Rubinfien (ed.), 2013, Garry Winogrand, (Yale University Press)
     
    For Garry Winogrand's books - Garry Winogrand, 1969, The Animals, (New York: Museum of Modern Art) [Republished Museum of Modern Art (2004)]; Garry Winogrand, 1975, Women Are Beautiful, (New York: Light Gallery & Farrar, Straus & Giroux); Garry Winogrand, 1977, Public Relations, (New York: Museum of Modern Art) [Republished by The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2004)]; Garry Winogrand, 1980, Stock Photographs: Fort Worth Fat Stock Show and Rodeo, (Olympic Marketing Corp) 
      
  3. Λ Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1952, The Decisive Moment, (New York: Simon and Schuster) 
      
  4. Λ André Kertész was born on 2 July 1894 in in Budapest when it was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. 
      
  5. Λ André Kertész, 1945, Day of Paris, (New York: J.J. Augustin); André Kertész, 1974, J’aime Paris: Photographs Since the Twenties, (New York: Grossman Publishers); Sandra S. Phillips, 1985, André Kertész: Of Paris and New York, (Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago) 
      

alan@luminous-lint.com

 
  

HomeContents > Further research

 
  
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Readings on, or by, individual photographers 
  
Henri Cartier-Bresson 
  
Arbaizar, P. et al., 2003, Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Man, the Image and the World: A Retrospective, (New York: Thames & Hudson) [Δ
  
Cartier-Bresson, Henri, 1952, The Decisive Moment, (New York: Simon and Schuster) [Δ
  
Cartier-Bresson, Henri, 1992, Henri Cartier-Bresson: Photographer, (Boston: Little, Brown and Company) [Δ
  
Galassi, Peter, 1993, Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Early Work, (New York: Museum of Modern Art) [Δ
  
Robert Doisneau 
  
Doisneau, R., 1980, Three Seconds from Eternity, (Boston: New York Graphic Society) [Δ
  
Doisneau, Robert, 1997, Three Seconds from Eternity: Photographs by Robert Doisneau, (New York: te Neues Publishing Co) [Δ
  
Hamilton, Peter, 1995, Robert Doisneau: A Photographer’s Life, (New York: Abbeville Press) [Δ
  
Jacques-Henri Lartigue 
  
Lartigue, J. H., 2003, Jacques Henri Lartigue: A Life’s Diary, (Paris: Centre Pompidou) [Δ
  
Lartigue, Jacques-Henri, 1970, Diary of a Century, (New York: Viking Press) [Edited by R. Avedon] [Δ
  
 
  
If you feel this list is missing a significant book or article please let me know - Alan - alan@luminous-lint.com 
  

HomeContentsPhotographers > Photographers worth investigating

 
Édouard Boubat  (1923-1999) • Brassaï  (1899-1984) • Henri Cartier-Bresson  (1908-2004) • Robert Doisneau  (1912-1994) • André Kertész  (1894-1985) • Jacques-Henri Lartigue  (1894-1986)
HomeThemesStreet > Street: Classic French examples 
 
A wider gazeRelated topics 
  
Cityscapes - Urban 
 
  

HomeVisual indexes > Street: Classic French examples

Please submit suggestions for Visual Indexes to enhance this theme.
Alan - alan@luminous-lint.com

 
  
   Photographer 
  
ThumbnailAndré Kertész: Bookseller 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailAndré Kertész: Day of Paris 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailAndré Kertész: Newstand, Paris 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailAndré Kertész: Street photography in Paris 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailHenri Cartier-Bresson: Hyeres 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailHenri Cartier-Bresson: The Decisive Moment 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailRobert Doisneau: Humanistic photography 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailRobert Doisneau: Looking through the window - variants 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailRobert Doisneau: Un regard Oblique 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
 
 
  
Refreshed: 14 April 2014, 04:00
 
  
 
  
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