40 photos by the great Master Henri Cartier Bresson will be on show in San Gimignano. We will be led into his world, look into the richness of each picture, testifying to his clear-headed and self-aware attitude towards his historical and sociological times.
“I’m just a nervous person, and I love painting.” …”As to photography, I don’t understand anything about it” he used to say.
Not understanding anything about photography, also meant not developing his own shots: this is something he would leave to professional photographers. He didn’t want any editing of the negatives or of the frames: each photo must be judged on the photographer’s ability to catch the here and now, and on the portrayed subject’s immediate response.
According to Cartier-Bresson, the photographic technique is only a tool that should not prevail on nor upset the initial experience, which is the real time defining a work’s meaning and value.
Henri Cartier-Bresson never revises his pictures, there is no selection, it is either accept it or discard it. Nothing else. Hence, he is just right when he says he doesn’t understand anything about photography in a world which, conversely, has elevated this art to a tool of illusion par excellence.
His photos catch the contemporary nature of things and life. His shots testify to his clear and accurate perception and to the order of forms.
“To take a photograph means to recognize, simultaneously and within a fraction of a second‚ both the fact itself and the rigorous organization of visually perceived forms that give it meaning. It is putting one’s head, one’s eye, and one’s heart on the same target”.
This exhibition aims to divulge Henri Cartier-Bresson’s photos and the way he used to work, like his constant search for contact with other people, in the most diverse places and circumstances. With his camera, while continuously seeking a surprise moment to bust our habits, or a moment of wonder to free our minds, he helps us be ready to grasp and glorify his work.