Henri Cartier-Bresson - Photographs London Tuesday, May 7, 2013 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Private Collection, Europe

  • Literature

    P. Galassi et al., Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Man, the Image and the World, London: Thames & Hudson, 2003, pl. 45 p. 59
    Henri Cartier-Bresson: Scrapbook, Photographs 1932-1946, London: Thames & Hudson, 2006, pp. 86-87
    P. Galassi, Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Modern Century, New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2010, p. 81

  • Catalogue Essay

    "For a long time now there has been an image of Cartier-Bresson as a turbulent Buddhist, an anarchist, a rebel. This is a well known and accurate portrait. Who has not known his rages, his glamour, his generosity, his eternal impulsiveness? If, however, he had been merely that, apart from the fact that his reputation might quickly have been lost down paths which are now rather well-trodden, indignation alone not being enough on which to base a work, he would not have revealed the qualities which allow one to say that he has possibly the best eye of any photographer of our age."
    JEAN CLAIR, 1997

  • Artist Biography

    Henri Cartier-Bresson

    French • 1908 - 2004

    Candidly capturing fleeting moments of beauty among the seemingly ordinary happenings of daily life, Henri Cartier-Bresson's work is intuitive and observational. Initially influenced by the Surrealists' "aimless walks of discovery," he began shooting on his Leica while traveling through Europe in 1932, revealing the hidden drama and idiosyncrasy in the everyday and mundane. The hand-held Leica allowed him ease of movement while attracting minimal notice as he wandered in foreign lands, taking images that matched his bohemian spontaneity with his painterly sense of composition.

    Cartier-Bresson did not plan or arrange his photographs. His practice was to release the shutter at the moment his instincts told him the scene before him was in perfect balance. This he later famously titled "the decisive moment" — a concept that would influence photographers throughout the twentieth century. 

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Behind the Gare Saint-Lazare, Paris

Gelatin silver print, printed later.
35.7 x 23.9 cm (14 x 9 3/8 in)
Signed in ink and copyright credit blindstamp in the margin.

£7,000 - 9,000 

Sold for £13,750

Contact Specialist
Lou Proud
Head of Photographs, London
+ 44 207 318 4092


London 8 May 2013 4pm