Paris Photo is ending today. During five intense but smooth days, dealers made their best to present not only high-end images but meaningfull selections . With photographs from less than 1000 US $ to six digit pieces, the standard was in every stand very high.
I have met many interesting stories and people, in life or stills, during this fascinating journey into time through images. Here follows a glympse of the necessarily partial picks I’ve made during the fair in order to share some of these beautiful but unique ways to capture the world we live or that was.
Serge Plantureux presented with passion and knowledge an exceptional series of mid-nineneteen century plates made by Gustave Le Gray, showing his friends, family as well as the bohemian but scientific spirit of these pionners of photography. La Lumière des Roses galerie, specialized in anonymous or off market photographers, showed an impressive nude of a dancer. Bernheimer galerie showed a great work of dedication and art made byJan C.Schegel and for our joy, «A Beautiful vision» by Julia Margaret Cameron was waiting for her preraphaelite lover at Hans P. Kraus Jr. galerie. At Gitterman’s, we’ve seen very interesting black and white shots of the newly rediscovered Hungarian born photographer Ferenc Brenko, Adam Bartos shared with us a kenyan beauty lying in the light of Nairobi. Camera Work in Berlin showed impressive contacts of De Niro captured on set by Steve Shapiro as well as a portrait of Kate Moss who seemed lost in wall papers.
Westlicht galerie attended Paris Photo for the first time and showed powerfull as well as questioning works from Araki and a unique set of Schwarzkogler shot during its action 6 in Vienna. The young team of curators of Fomu (museum of photography in Antwerp), brought me to discover the Sochi Project of Rob Hornstra presented and supported by Flatland Galerie. I’ve met face to face the bad guys of London with Bruce Gilden, presented during the «carte blanche to» Archive of Modern Conflict, smiled with Timm Rautert amusing but strong 70ies pictures at Parrotta’s and spent a long time talking with Stephen Bulger about David Heath.
As a reminder of what a good collector’s eye is, I also had the chance to go through some of Agnes B. impressive collection. To end this overview of PARIS PHOTO 2012, the first word that comes into mind is quality, just before quantity and diversity. That is surely why the public, as well as collectors, buyers and curators were there, at this annual «rendez-vous» with pictures, market and Paris.
Read the full text of this article in the French version of Le Journal.
Matthieu Wolmark, journalist