During his long career Henri Cartier-Bresson realised several hundreds of portraits, of famous personalities as well as unknowns. The exhibition comprises 121 portraits which he selected from among the negatives for his book Tête à Tête (1998). The earliest images from this series date from the thirties, the period during which he bought his first Leica and travelled around Europe with his friend André Pieyre de Mandiargues. This was when he started to define his photographic style.
All these portraits reflect the twentieth century, the richness of HCB’s work and his taste for literature and painting: from Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse and Simone de Beauvoir in the forties, through Marilyn Monroe, Alberto Giacometti and Coco Chanel in the sixties to Robert Doisneau in 1986.
Through these portraits Henri Cartier-Bresson succeeds in capturing in one second the eternity of the eye, the “inner silence of a willing victim”.
In cooperation with the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation, Paris