L'éloge de la couleur

Published on by Thierry Combe - updated on

In 2014, the Maison Européenne de la Photographie organised an exhibition entitledl’Eloge de la Couleur specially for the Salon de la Photo. The show was a tribute not only to some of the pioneers of colour photography such as Gisèle Freund and Keld Helmer-Petersen, but also to others who built their work on the use of colour, including Bernard Faucon, Franco Fontana, William Eggleston, Joel Meyerowitz, Harry Callahan, Saul Leiterou and Luigi Ghirri.

"The black and white aesthetic dominated the first half of the twentieth century. Although a succession of colour processes were developed since the birth of photography, they were most often used by amateurs and fashion or advertising photographers.

       Long before the 1960s, however, a number of photographers, such as Gisèle Freund and Keld Helmer-Petersen, endeavoured to give colour photography the status it deserved. But it was not until around 1960 that William Eggleston, Joel Meyerowitz, Harry Callahan and Saul Leiter provide the impulse for a movement that was to develop continuously from then on. With the emergence of new technology, colour photography has now become the norm.

       This exhibition pays tribute to some of these pioneers, and also to photographers such as Bernard Faucon, Franco Fontana and Luigi Ghirri who have built their work on the use of colour. Based on the collection of the MEP - Maison Européenne de la Photographie, it not only presents a selection of outstanding prints, but also provides an insight into an adventure that is still unfamiliar to many: that of colour in the twentieth century."

Jean-Luc Monterosso,Director of the Maison Européenne de la Photographie

Photographie de Photographie de Keld Helmer Petersen
Keld Helmer Petersen

Photographie de Keld Helmer Petersen (collection MEP)

Keld Helmer Petersen collection MEP
Photographie de Ralph Gibson - collection MEP
Ralph Gibson

Photographie de Saul Leiter collection MEP

Ralph Gibson - collection MEP
Photographie de Saul Leiter collection MEP
Saul Leiter

Photographie de Saul Leiter (collection MEP) 

collection MEP

Sans titre (de la série “L’histoire de France”), 1990
Tirage couleur Dye Transfer
© Ralph Gibson. Collection Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris.

Harlem, 1960
Tirage couleur à développement chromogène
© Saul Leiter. Courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, NY. Collection Maison Européenne de la Photographie, Paris. Don de l’Association des Amis de la MEP.

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