A daily section of JFC at the Visa Festival for Image from August 31 to September 8, 2019.
The 31th edition of Visa pour l’Image ended with the award of the Visa d’Or – Paris Match to Guillermo Arias, freelancer at AFP for his extraordinary reportage on South American migrants trying to walking group to the United States. Guillermo’s images are poignant and describe this immense human tide advancing in concert with only one motivation: the Hope of a better life. This long procession of men, women and children takes under Guillermo’s eye a Biblical character that one could mistake for the Jewish people under the guidance of Moses.
For my part, I found that this year there was a great homogeneity in programming. Some have criticised the fact that there are fewer exhibitions, but I less is better. The same goes for gender parity, the accusation against Jean-François Leroy on the pretext that there were more men than women exhibited. On this point too I support Jean-François Leroy because it is not the sex of the photographer that determines the quality of an image. In addition, I am against all those who deplore that it is “always the same selected photographers who are exhibited: it is nevertheless extraordinary to be able to find in the same place, the Convent of the Minimes, big names like Lynsey Addario, Guillermo Arias, Patrick Chauvel, Alain Keler, Pascal Maitre, Frédéric Noy, Ivor Prickett, Brent Stirton, and Dar Yasin, therefore bravo!
Thanks to Canon, many young people of all nationalities were also able to participate in the festival this year. The organization of the 2nd Bureau as always has excelled, thanks to the team of Sylvie Grumbach and Martial Hobeniche!
But I want to go back to address two more points. The debates that I found without any real interest, as well as the evenings at Campo Santo, which I think are too long – We could be spared two subjects per evening.
Jean-François Leroy, no doubt thanks to the stature of his new President Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres and the arrival of the Minister of Culture, has been more serene, but no less combative. The figures will tell if the attendance is stable or not, I finally regretted that the Americans are less present and that there are less partner evenings with the exception of the AFP party, very successful, probably because it was the only one … Fortunately the sweetness of life in Perpignan was at the rendezvous which will allow the festival to continue I hope for a long time.
Jean-François Camp :
Former owner of the DUPON laboratories, sponsors of the Visa pour l’Image festival for 30 years, but also the Rencontres D’Arles, the Images and Nature Festival of La Gacilly, the Bayeux Prize for war correspondents. Vice President of the association Visa pour l’Image, creator and in charge of the International Center for Photojournalism and CEO of DUREV Events dedicated to the promotion of the photographic image in Paris.