Bernard Descamps

Guest photographer at the Festival Planche(s) Contact in 2016

The beach © Bernard Descamps, Deauville, 2016
Deauville Travelling beach © Bernard Descamps, Deauville, 2016


Bernard Descamps signed his first publication in 1974, in the Swiss magazine Camera. The following year he exhibited with Bernard Plossu, Bruno and Kuligowski, at the Bibliothèque nationale de France, in an exhibition organized by Jean-Claude Lemagny. This was followed by a series of group and solo exhibitions in France and abroad, notably: in 1976 with André Kertész at the Leverkusen Museum (Germany), in 1978 at the Georges Pompidou Center for a solo exhibition, and in 1983 for Sahara, an exhibition presented at the Agathe Gaillard Gallery in Paris.
In 1986, he was one of the founding members of the VU agency. Eight years later he founded the Rencontres de la photographie africaine de Bamako with Françoise Huguier.
His work was recently exhibited at the Hotel de Sauroy during a retrospective presented in the fall of 2015, having given rise to the publication of a new book, Où sont passés nos rêves? (ed. Filigranes).
Bernard Descamps is represented by the Camera Obscura gallery, Paris and the Box gallery, Brussels.

In Deauville as part of the Planche(s) Contact festival

Master of black and white photography, Bernard Descamps loves the curves of beaches and deserts, bird skies and seaside lights. Since the 1980s, with a unique sense of framing and composition, Bernard Descamps has been using the square format that purifies and recomposes the landscapes of Africa, the streets of Tokyo or the northern beaches in winter.
In Deauville he has returned to his favorite posture, that of the traveling photographer who walks for a long time and surveys the beach and the city, its empty or occupied spaces, during the week and the weekend. This is how he reveals it, in nuances and in all its lights.

Bernard Descamps about his exhibition Deauville-travelling-plage

""In Deauville, one Sunday
Under the rain, on the boards,
She walks next to
An older man.
He says almost nothing
In Deauville, this morning.
He walks on the beach
His second marriage

Thus begins the song Deauville sans Trintignant by Vincent Delerm .

Here is a first photograph : the one of a couple a little sad on the wet boards of Deauville...
This is how I like to photograph. To be there, to stroll, to look, to listen, to let myself be forgotten, to go through the places; with curiosity as the main engine, to follow the very ordinary events that make the daily life of a beach, to wait for the ordinary to switch to the unexpected, the beautiful surprise, and to try to fix it, to stop time... what an ambition! To try to catch these small pleasures which make good photographs. The ones that carry a small emotion, like a song does. The photographs of this incessant travelling on the boards of Deauville must be sung... preferably in a low voice


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