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Alain Laboile
Alain Laboile
Alain Laboile

Alain Laboile

Country: France
Birth: 1968

I was born on the 1st of May, 1968, in Bordeaux. After an half-hearted schooling, I live of odd jobs until 1990, the year I met Anne. It was the time of my opening to art.I accompanied Anne, student in Art History, to her lectures.It is in the darkness of the crowded amphitheatres that I witnessed heatedly the dissection of the Italian Renaissance artworks. Drawing being my ally since childhood, I can let myself drift into this third dimension by making plaster portaits in a corner of the studio we share. Then came, through a random reading, my fascination for insects. Jean-Henri Fabres's Souvenirs entomologiques will inspire me and accompany me for several years.Plaster and stone slowly fade away to let the rusty iron turn into shaggy insects.On the top of a hill near Bordeaux ,in Gironde, our house fills up with kids.My activity is taking off, and I need to take some photos of my sculptures. That's precisely at that moment, in 2004, that I accidently dive into photography, or more accurately macrophotography, were insects are predominant.Three years later, insects went into hiding under the leaves, my six children are born, and we have left the hill for the stream on the edge of the world. My photo-diary was established without my really noticing, It now seems vital and everlasting.

About "La famille"
I'm a father of six. Through my photographic work I celebrate and document my family life:A life on the edge of the world, where intemporality and the universality of childhood meet. Day to day I create a family album that constitues a legacy that I will pass on to my children.My work reflects our way of life,revolving around their childhood. My photographs will be the testimony of that. In a way my approach can be considered similar to the one of an ethnologist. Though my work is deeply personal, It's also accessible,addressing human nature and allowing the viewer to enter my world and reflect on their own childhoods. Fed everyday and shared with the world via the internet, my photographic production has became a mean of communication, leading to a questionning about freedom, nudity, being and having.

Exclusive Interview with Alain Laboile:


All About Photo: When did you realize you wanted to be a photographer?
I was working as a sculptor. In 2004 I bought my first camera to photograph my sculptures and my passion for insects drove me to practice macrophotography. After the birth of my last two daughters I raised little by little my lens towards my family. The passion was born and did not leave me any more since 9 years.

Where did you study photography?
I am totally self-taught. When I began, I had a very limited photographic culture, no technique. I learned by sharing my photos on forums on the web, by receiving critics which allowed me to progress.

Do you have a mentor or role model?
I met the famous American photographer Jock Sturges during the summer 2012. He became a good friend, a kind of spiritual father who accompanies me in my artistic route. I owe him a lot.

Do you remember your first shot? What was it?
I think It was a macrophotography showing a mating of slugs.

What or who inspires you?
My work is extremely personal because it concerns my family life and our little offbeat lifestyle. I try to be inspired by nobody. It is the spectators of my work, that sometimes establish comparisons. Sally Mann’s work is often mentioned.

How could you describe your style?
An Internet user compared one day my photographic style with street photography. I think that if indeed I lived in town I would practise street photography. But living in the countryside, I photograph my family in its close environment, on the deep.

Do you have a favorite photograph or series?
I like very much the work of joseph-Philippe Bevillard, His series of portraits of Irish gypsies is fascinating.

What kind of gear do you use? Camera, lens, digital, film?
I worked for a long time with a Canon 5 D Mark III camera and 35 mm f1,4 lens. I now own a Leica M monochrom which I use with a 35 mm f1,4 Leica lens.

Do you spend a lot of time editing your images? For what purpose?
I am very selective. I do not hesitate to delete all the photos which do not satisfy me totally.

What advice would you give a young photographer?
I would say to him that he should not focus on the equipment nor to be intimidated by the lack of technique, all this is secondary. It is necessary to let speak its instinct, accept the criticism.

What are your projects?
I will publish a book with Steidl Verlag in 2014. An exciting project!

Your best memory as a photographer?
My publication in the NY times in 2012. I had made several interviews before and I made a lot since but that this has a real symbolic value !

AYour worst souvenir as a photographer?
In 2009, I had to stop photography for several months. I needed money and I sold my photographic stuff. A nightmare!

The compliment that touched you most?
One day Jock Sturges let this comment on one of my photos: "It's wonderful images like this that reinforce my realization that you are my favorite living photographer. Amen "

If you were someone else who would it be?
I am not certain to want to be somebody else but I would have liked to began to practise photography 20 years earlier.

An anecdote?
I won a big Canon competition. I left exploring the canopy in the rainforest of kakamega in Kenya. I was accompanied by a crew managed by Peter Webber the director of the movie “Girl with a pearl earring” and “Hannibal Lecter”. We ate spaghetti bolognese together in the middle of the jungle. Fabulous memories a little bit crazy!

Anything else you would like to share?
I published my first book "Waiting for the postman" in november 2012 . My next exhibition will take place in Santa Monica (California) at dnj Gallery from november 2nd ( 2013) to January 4 th( 2014)
 

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Guy Le Querrec
Guy Le Querrec (born 1941 in Paris, France) is a French photographer and filmmaker, noted for his documentary images of jazz musicians. He is a member of Magnum Photos. Le Querrec took his first photographs as a teenager using a basic Fex/Indo Ultra-Fex, buying second hand soon after another and more sophisticated bakelite 6 x 9 cm Photax camera, in 1955. He shot his first pictures of jazz musicians in London in the late 1950s. After having served in the army, he became a professional in 1967, and then worked as a picture editor and photographer for Jeune Afrique magazine, working in francophone Africa, including Chad, Cameroon, Niger, and the Central African Republic. In 1971 he gave his archives to Agence Vu, founded by Pierre de Fenoyl and then co-founded Viva (photo agency). In 1976, he left Viva and joined Magnum Photos. In the late 1970s he began directing films, working with Robert Bober. In 1983 at the Rencontres d'Arles he experimented with projecting images while a jazz quartet played. Besides having photographed numerous jazz festivals and African subjects, Le Querrec has traveled to China and documented American Indians. He has documented Villejuif, a suburb of Paris, as well as the Carnation Revolution in Portugal. He has also taught many photography workshops in France.Source: Wikipedia Le Querrec underlines the necessity of “being able to forget oneself,” to capture the magic instant, the unusual attitude of a subject, or the singular light of a moment. “I search every cranny, as did the Italian footballer Pippo Inzaghi,” he says, comparing himself to the legendary Juventus and AC Milan striker who scored 317 goals in his career. “He was an expert in the art of placement, a cunning ‘fox in the box’.” This approach is perhaps best illustrated by his iconic image of Miles Davis on stage in Pleyel on November 3, 1969. “I strove to anticipate his movements, which is how I found myself at the right place and time when he froze in a beam of light radiating from the floor, which illuminated him at low-angle and projected his shadow onto the curtains. That’s how Miles passed fluidly from the harsh and flat stage light to a sophisticated sculptural illumination, which accentuated his peculiar and fascinating beauty and highlighted the depth of his gaze – qualities that also describe his musicianship.” A jazz fan since his teens, Le Querrec, being the jocular wordsmith that he is, likes to recall that his passion for what he describes as “the most popular of erudite music” came to him in the discotheque of accordion-player Gus Viseur’s father – viseur being the French word for viewfinder… As the Italian saying goes, se non è vero è ben trovato! The fact is, he stays tuned into the music as he works. “I don’t cut out sound.” For that reason it has been said that his eye listens. “His indisputable success in the attempt to reveal the true intimacy of jazz is owed to his inordinate passion that borders on empathy,” points out Stéphane Ollivier in the preface to Jazz Comme Une Image, 10 Ans de Banlieues Bleues (Jazz as Image, 10 Years of Blue Banlieues), Scandéditions, 1993. Consulting the work that Guy Le Querrec produced over a decade during that major festival means finding the entire history of contemporary jazz, in action, on stage, in this part of the Seine Saint-Denis department. But it is also – and most importantly – like breaking into the backstage, the wings or the green rooms of the musicians, of Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, Ornette Coleman, Nina Simone, Henri Texier, Michel Portal…. It’s not about voyeurism, but rather about witnessing the complicity and bond that generated the spontaneous expression we call jazz. Le Querrec explains, “What impels me to shoot is my curiosity for their idiosyncrasies, their ways of being, their behaviors, their stories: their dialogue with life.” Deeply concentrated with his trusty and silent Leica, he tenaciously takes “a fragment of reality from the passage of time.” He acknowledges that “photography is like fishing: it’s usually when you are about to take off that the fish takes the bait.” That’s when it becomes necessary to seize chances. “We try so much to look for chance that it escapes us.” In this sense, Le Querrec considers his work in the world of jazz as presenting similarities to much of the work he has created at Magnum, since joining in 1976: in his work with Breton families, indigenous communities in North America or even his photographs of François Mitterrand posing for a sculpture in the Elysée Palace in Paris. “I have never tried to separate subjects when I move amongst them, and I ask my eye to do the same. I want my photography to carry a scent – the scent of people.” This is an attitude, or rather, a philosophy that brings the musician Louis Sclavis, a clarinetist, saxophonist, and long-time friend to define Le Querrec as follows: “He is not a photographer of jazz, he is a jazz photographer.”Source: Magnum Photos
Alex Majoli
Italy
1971
Alex Majoli (b. 1971, Italy) is a photographer whose work has focused on the human condition and the theater within our daily lives. He has received many awards including the Guggenheim Fellowship in 2015, the W. Eugene Smith Grant(2017), the Getty Images Grant For Editorial Photography 2009, and the Infinity Award for Photojournalism in 2003. He has been a member of Magnum Photos since 2001 and is represented by Howard Greenberg Gallery NY.Source: LensCulture At the age of 15, Alex Majoli joined the F45 Studio in Ravenna, working alongside Daniele Casadio. While studying at the Art Institute in Ravenna, he joined Grazia Neri Agency and traveled to Yugoslavia to document the conflict. He returned many times over the next few years, covering all major events in Kosovo and Albania. Majoli graduated from art school in 1991. Three years later, he made an intimate portrayal of the closing of an asylum for the insane on the island of Leros, Greece, a project that became the subject of his first book, Leros. In 1995 Majoli went to South America for several months, photographing a variety of subjects for his ongoing personal project, Requiem in Samba. He started the project Hotel Marinum in 1998, on life in harbor cities around the world, the final goal of which was to perform a theatrical multimedia show. That same year he began making a series of short films and documentaries. After becoming a full member of Magnum Photos in 2001, Majoli covered the fall of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, and two years later the invasion of Iraq. He continues to document various conflicts worldwide for Newsweek, The New York Times Magazine, Granta and National Geographic. Majoli, in collaboration with Thomas Dworzak, Paolo Pellegrin and Ilkka Uimonen, had an extremely successful exhibition and installation Off Broadway in New York in 2004, which traveled to France and Germany. He then became involved in a project for the French Ministry of Culture entitled BPS, or Bio-Position System, about the social transformation of the city of Marseilles. A recently completed project, Libera me, is a reflection on the human condition. In 2013 Majoli, in collaboration with Pellegrin, completed a massive photographic project in the Congo, which resulted in a his largest book project to date being published with Aperture, in 2015.Source: Magnum Photos At the age of fifteen, Alex Majoli joined the F45 photo agency in Ravenna, Italy, and he graduated from the city’s art Institute in 1991. While in art school, Majoli became a member of Grazia Neri Agency and traveled to Yugoslavia to document the ongoing political conflict. In 1995, Majoli published his first book documenting the patients in a mental hospital that was formerly used as a military hospital in Leros, Greece. That same year he traveled to Brazil where he started the project Tudo Bom. In this, he visualizes the darker side of a complex society where daily life is often shaped by hardship and violence. Majoli has been working on this project for twenty years. The series Hotel Marinum that Majoli started in 1998 documents life in harbor cities around the world and was inspired by his life growing up in the port of Ravenna. Majoli has been a member of Magnum Photos since 2001 and has worked on assignments for a variety of publications, including The New York TIME Magazine, Newsweek, The New Yorker, and National Geographic. Majoli has been inspired by the theories of the Sicilian playwright Luigi Pirandello, who believed there is a thin line between theater and real-life and that people take on a role in their daily lives. Over the years, the photographer has examined this philosophy more fully. Majoli does not aspire to document reality. Rather, in his more personal projects, he explores this idea of people as actors in their own lives. In his most recent work, he uses powerful strobe lights to make his subjects aware of the roles they play in the scene that he records. The result is cinematic; the dark surroundings of a scene highlight powerful human emotions.Source: International Center of Photography
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