Alliance Francaise displays original photos of Cyril Clement


Alliance Française de Manille, with the support of the Embassy of France to the Philippines present the exhibition entitled “Faces of the Century” at the Alliance Française de Manille Gallery.

The exhibition that will run until July 21 is composed of 25 framed, original photographs by French renowned photographer, Luc Fournol from the private collection of Cyril Clement.

For the first time, the historical images of the late French photographer will be brought to the Philippines.

Intimate portraits of Truman Capote, Ernest Hemingway, Pablo Picasso, Yves Saint Laurent, Frank Sinatra, Salvador Dali, and Charlie Chaplin are just a few of the famous historical personalities, artists and celebrities from the 20th century that will be featured in this project.

From the private collection of Cyril Clement, this exhibit will be the first of its kind in the country, an exclusive view of pieces that Fournol was not able to present prior to his death in 2007.

The painters, writers, and celebrities were his friends. The first camera he owned, a Leica, was given by his uncle when he was 16 years old. It was at this time and age that he started to explore the rooftops of Paris, (light-footed and nimble as a cat), for a better view and perspective of the capital’s architecture.

Soon he started socializing where all the artists in the city would converge. From walking around his neighborhood, not far from La Butte Montmartre, he took his first celebrity photograph of singer and actress Juliette Gréco.

An Artisan Voyeur, as he defined himself, he started working during the 50s in the photo laboratory of Paris Match where he had the chance to meet famous photographers of his time. One of them, Isis, started teaching him and it was her influence that marked the beginning of Fournol’s career.

His first portrait of writer and theater critic Paul Léautaud of “Art” magazine became his key to the social circles of the master painters and artists of his era such as Picasso, Chagall, Braque, and Buffet.

In love with black and white photography, with its natural lighting and classic framing, Fournol continued his career as a photographer for French magazine, “Jours de France” where he took portraits of famous personalities in the arts and politics.

“First of all, it’s the subject who interests me.”, said Luc Fournol, “The technique is secondary. I always refuse to work with an artificial light. The most important part of a photo is the first encounter.”


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