What to see at Paris Photo — Magazine for the blind

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Paris Photo brings together over 1,600 artists, 183 participants, around 150 galleries and 34 publishers from 31 countries representing the five continents: 130 exhibitors from Europe, 32 from North America, seven from Africa and the Middle East, three from South America and 14 from Asia and Oceania. It is easy to understand why this international fair once again makes the French capital the epicenter of photography in November.

The exhibition space is divided into three sectors, with the main sector, Curiosa, dedicated to emerging artists and their publishers. Paris Photo 2022 will feature 48 newcomers, including 18 first-time participants. For its 25th anniversary, the fair gets an icon of its own in Spanish actress Rossy de Palma, whose extraordinary beauty is prized by photographers, starting with her compatriot Gorka Postigo, who she portrayed for a 2018 edition Fashion. Blind takes you on a guided tour of the top ten favorites.

US Army and Navy Photography, Operation Crossroads, “Baker”, Bikini Atoll, 1946 © US Army, Daniel Blau


From document to work of art

That Daniel Blue Gallery (Munich) is one of the few to show original prints from the 19th century by artists from Édouard Baldus to Gustave Le Gray and Émile Zola. Another special feature: Daniel Blau also specializes in images of historical events of the 20th century, such as war and space conquest, documented by American army or NASA photographers. This year’s exhibit includes a rarely seen selection of vintage prints of the attack on Pearl Harbor and photos of the nuclear tests conducted by the US Department of Defense in the Nevada desert: a fusion of beauty and horror.

Cartier Bresson forever

In contrast to the scarce pictures of the 19th century, since the market was exhausted over the years, the decades from 1920 to 1970 are particularly well represented. Henri Cartier Bressonone of the most important photographers of this time, is represented at several stands: Augusta Edwards art (London), along with other photographers from the Magnum Photos agency, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year; Peter Fetterman‘s (Santa Monica) in the company of other “stars” like Ansel Adams, Eve Arnold, Gianni Berengo Gardin and George Hoyningen-Huene; and at Francoise Paviot Gallery (Paris), co-exhibiting with Vintage Works (Chalfont), HCB will be featured alongside Charles Nègre, Man Ray, Brassaï to name a few.

Magnum Photos, Madrid, 1933, Courtesy Augusta Edwards Fine Art © Henri Cartier-Bresson
Magnum Photos, Madrid, 1933, Courtesy Augusta Edwards Fine Art © Henri Cartier-Bresson

Cartier Bresson in press

delpire & co publish a new edition of the reference book (which was out of print) Henri Cartier-Bresson Photographe, first published in 1979, with 155 important photographs from the period 1926 to 1978 (344 pages, €65). The same publisher also publishes Les Anglais / The Englishthe HCB’s black-and-white photographs, which take up half the book, are juxtaposed with Martin Parr’s color images from his own Last way out Projekt (1984) and a commissioned work 2009/2010, both printed on the reverse. The book (216 pages, French/English, €42) accompanies the exhibition reconciliation on view at the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation (November 8, 2022 to February 12, 2023).

Exceptionally

Frankel Gallery (San Francisco) highlights iconic figures from the history of 20th-century photography, representing everything from fashion (Richard Avedon) to portraiture (Diane Arbus, Peter Hujar) to street photography (Lee Friedlander, Garry Winogrand). In addition to these “classics” there are contemporary artists (Alex Soth) and artists active in the field of contemporary art such as Like Christian Marley and his unique piece entitled “Hot August Night” (1991), from which body mix Series, a collage of two record sleeves sewn together. This creative gesture evokes the exquisite corpses so dear to the surrealists, as well as the sampling and remixing techniques used in the world of music.

Hot August Night, 1991, record sleeve sewn with thread © Christian Marclay, Courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco
Hot August Night, 1991, record sleeve sewn with thread © Christian Marclay, Courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco

discovery

The Curiosa sector is an opportunity to discover photography in a different way through innovative exhibition formats, mixed media works and images printed on unusual materials. Among the 16 projects from nine countries presented in the 2022 selection Pao Houa Her (Bockley Gallery, Minneapolis) that combines the real and the simulacrum in an installation that presents a poppy (the plant used to produce opium) in front of an image of the same flowers. The artist recalls her childhood when she was “fed” opium to keep her crying from being noticed as her family secretly fled Laos.

Untitled (real opium, behind an opium backdrop), 2020, The imaginative landscape series © Pao Houa Her
Untitled (real opium, behind an opium backdrop), 2020, The imaginative landscape series © Pao Houa Her

Beauty as a weapon of seduction

First-time participant at Paris Photo, Gallery C (Paris) is bringing a solo exhibition to the Curiosa sector Matthieu Gafsou who was chosen by Ruinart to do a residency in his vineyards. The Swiss photographer is one of many contemporary photographers who deal with the subject of ecology. Going beyond purely documentary practice, he takes an original approach by coating his prints with crude oil. This is the raw material used in plastic manufacturing and its impact on the environment is harmful. Of striking beauty, the images draw our attention to the ambivalence of things.

Pétrole 1, from the Vivants series, 2021-2022 © Matthieu Gafsou & Galerie C
Pétrole 1, from the Vivants series, 2021-2022 © Matthieu Gafsou & Galerie C

women first

In 2018 women made up 20% of the artists exhibited at Paris Photo, this year it is 31%. While each gallery is free to exhibit whatever it chooses, the Elle x Paris photo zone, established five years ago in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, has helped increase the visibility and representation of women at the fair. This year Federica Chiocchetti, specialist in photography and literature, was invited to select 100 works by female artists for the programme. This includes the Belgian Elke Tangeten and this postcard covered with enamel paint issued by Gallery sage (Paris) whose stand is dedicated to Art Brut.

Untitled, 2019, glass paint on postcard, sage © Elke Tangeten

William Klein in the spotlight

William Klein, who died last September, is honored several times at the fair, beginning with Le Reverbere Gallery (Lyon), which has remained loyal to Paris Photo since the first iteration and will celebrate its 40th anniversary in 2022. There, William Klein exhibited his painted contact lenses for the first time. The one presented here is one of the 25 images selected by Rossy de Palma. More prints by the American photographer can be found at polka (Paris) and Howard Greenberg (New York).

Small in print

Atelier EXB presents 30 copies of a limited edition of the monograph Yes, each copy with a print. The book traces Klein’s career and focuses on his work as a painter and photographer. Designed in close collaboration with Klein, this definitive monograph is accompanied by a lengthy essay by David Campany, Director of the International Center of Photography, New York (384 pages, €69). Klein’s cult film from 1966 Qui êtes vous Polly Maggoo? appears as a film novel at delpire & co (544 pages, €65). A similar installation can be seen from November 3rd to 19th as part of the PhotoSaintGermain festival (13, rue de l’Abbaye, Paris 6e) in her bookstore gallery.

Ebbets Field New York 1955, 1955 © William Klein, Courtesy Galerie Le Réverbère
Ebbets Field New York 1955, 1955 © William Klein, Courtesy Galerie Le Réverbère

book signings

If you can’t afford printing, go with a signed book! Small selection: Sophie Calle, Joan Foncuberta, Harry Gruyaert at Actes Sud; Bernard Descamps, Sara Imloul, Kourtney Roy at Filigrees; Guillaume Herbaut, Martin Parr & Lee Shulman, Katrien De Blauwer at Textuel; Anaïs Boudot, Marina Gadonneix, Antoines d’Agata at The Eyes; Denis Dailleux, Jane Evelyn Atwood, Jean-François Spricigo at Le bec en l’air; Susan Meiselas, Sarah Moon, Paolo Woods from delpire & co.; Raymond Depardon, Tom Arndt, Rinko Kawaushi…

Paris Photo, Grand Palais Ephémère, Paris, 10.-13. November 2022

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