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Gaston Paris / Roger Viollet : first female mayor in France, 1943


On the occasion of the municipal elections in France this week, Roger-Viollet photo agency presents Marie-Rose Bouchemousse (1889-1966), first woman appointed mayor, in France, of her native village Vigeois (Corrèze) by the prefect in November 1943 under the Vichy regime . Despite everything, during an attempt to occupy her village, in the company of her assistant and the parish priest, the graduate of the École normale supérieure, opposed the German division Das Reich who had to leave.

Born in 1903, Gaston Paris was one of the pillars of the weekly Vu in the 1930s, founded in 1928 by Lucien Vogel. The only employee among the photographers, he shared the pages of the magazine with Laure Albin-Guillot, Germaine Krull, André Kertész … He multiplied reportages: cinema, sport, song, theater, the construction site of the new Trocadéro … etc. Alongside this classic production of a photographer reporter of the time, he delivered many strange and personal short reports, with surreal inspirations. He excelled in bizarre staging and became a regular contributor to Detective magazine from the late 1930s to the 1950s; between horror and Grand Guignol he recreated dramas populated by gangsters and adulterers … He died in Paris in 1964. Redeemed by Roger-Viollet shortly after the photographer’s disappearance, the 15,000 photographs by Gaston Paris allow us to follow the evolution of his gaze, to grasp his familiarity with his models, Simenon, Cocteau, Jouvet or Piaf, and to discover the charms of swimsuit competitions at the Molitor swimming pool, the behind the scenes of the Folies Bergère or the workshops of Yves Brayer and Moses Kisling.



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