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Jacques Sonck : « Portraits »


by Thierry Maindrault

The Fifty One Gallery in Antwerp is exhibiting, until April 16, 2022, the photographs of two great image makers which seem to come back to us from distant and great photographic years past. It is not so ! Jacques Sonck and Eamonn Doyle are contemporaries with particularly modern and innovative photographic glances and reflexes.

The images of the Belgian Jacques Sonck can be seen at the Fifty One Too gallery, the second Fifty One gallery in Antwerp.

I really like these real photographs of creation, inspiration and know-how. The subjects are interesting in themselves, the photographer’s technique is very sophisticated; buts erased completely. Miracle, the symbiosis of the two offers us subtle and complex works of a disconcerting simplicity. Everything is complete in each image, visible and invisible to make generations and generations think.

The characters are disconcertingly banal in their environment and yet, for each portrait, we are immediately transported beyond representation.

The shooting technique is totally mastered from the camera angle, to the light or the depth of field (nothing is innocent or left to chance, whether voluntary or innate). And then, this fixation of the image unlike the great instinctive portrait painters. So many visitors think that my various portraits are carefully posed when this is not the case. For the most part, these are so-called stolen portraits (many subjects are unaware of their presence on the picture rails). Jacques Sonck achieves the real feat of having his subjects pose and gives  us the beautiful illusion that they are stolen. A work of craftsmanship from a great artist who has taken to the streets. Forget his subjects (really very endearing), forget the photographer (it will surely be more difficult) and run fast, if you’re not too far, see these photographs in equally good quality prints.

Thierry Maindrault


Hofstraat 2,
2000 Antwerp, Belgium

Tuesday to Saturday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

T +32(0)3 289 84 58
[email protected]

without prior reservation

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