Quicker than drawing

© Henri Cartier-Bresson / Magnum Photos. Romania in a train, 1975.

Henri Cartier-Bresson, the French photographer, has often been referred to as ‘The Eye of the Century’ for his collective work of iconic images. Cartier-Bresson was one of the founders of the Magnum photo agency, which enabled photojournalists to reach a broad audience through magazines, while still retaining control over their work. He spent over twenty-five years observing and capturing world changing events, with a compassionate eye. He was also an artist, but said he liked photography because it was quicker than drawing. He could capture an exact image, the lines and form in an instant.

© Henri Cartier-Bresson, Martine’s Legs 1968

Henri told his wife, Martine, who was not French, that she must read Proust, to better understand him and his French heritage. Which she did, and said that it did give her an understanding of him and added that she felt he himself, in a sense, was a Proust character.

©Henri Cartier-Bresson, Brasserie  Lipp, 1969 Paris

MoMA is holding an exhibition, the first in the United States in three decades, called, “The Modern Century” from April 11–June 28, 2010. The retrospective examines his entire career and presents nearly three hundred photographs. The exhibition makes stops at The Art Institute of Chicago, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the High Museum of Art, in Atlanta. Check out more at MoMA.

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3 thoughts on “Quicker than drawing

  1. I know…how cool would it be to live in New York and have access to all that culture?!

    The proper French lady is so thinking, “these half naked girls, what is this world coming to?”…haha. Great moment caught.

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