Philippe Abergel is a photographer living in Paris for about thirty years. Organizing workshops in various schools (École des Gobelins, EFET), he also makes documentaries about photographers. Two weeks ago, we presented a wonderful interview with Frank Horvat. It’s now the turn of Georges Tourdjman, a former teacher of Philippe Abergel.
A great fashion and nude photographer, an outstanding portraitist, and most important of all, a joyful lover of family intimacy, Georges Tourdjman was a student of Alexey Brodovitch back in New York during the 1950s and 1960s. It was in this same city, in its overflowing streets, that he wandered around, experimenting on street photography to finally chose portraiture. Artists, celebrities, each figure told a story of his/her own, an unspeakably mystery only unveiled by his eyes. He was published in Camera, Stern, Marie France, before entering in several museum collections.
He was one of the last humanist photographers. In 2016, a few weeks before his death, Georges Tourdjman wrote us the following sentence: “Photography is often talked about as an abstract entity, as if it weren’t made by men and women without whom it would be no more than a vulgar technique of reproduction. One regret, however: to have collected no more than on hundred and fifty portraits of my best loved photographs”
On Philippe Abergel
“I have been a freelance photographer living in Paris for 35 years now. I have worked on assignments for major newspapers and directed advertising campaigns in France and abroad. I have been collaborating for about ten years with lots of publishing houses, and have to my credit 13 fine-arts books on Heritage and crafts (L’Elysée, Quai d’Orsay, Palais Farnese, Palais Thott…). Teaching photography at the EFET Paris XII School and at the École des Gobelins led me to think about transmission issue.
This series of documentaries is entitled Portrait of a Photographer. It was born from this desire to pass on to the younger generations, and to photography lovers, what the life of a great photographer is, to have with a 26′ long his analysis on his profession, on his pictures and on the photographic idiom.
Photographers filmed and interviewed by a photographer is what interested me. As Georges Tourdjman said: “I love photographers, and I love photographers who live photography”. “It’s not easy to make a good picture, but when you do, then…”
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Georges Tourdjman, a documentary by Philippe Abergel.
Editing: Philippe Abergel
Production assistant: Lisa Pasquale
Coordination : Nathalie Benchetrit
Production : Caméra16