Anders Petersen

  • Art
  • Photography
Critics' choice
1/5
'Close Distance', 2002 © Anders Petersen. Courtesy Galerie VU’ / BnF, Estampes et photographie
2/5
Stockholm, 2000 © Anders Petersen, Courtesy Galerie VU’ / BnF, Estampes et photographie
3/5
'Café Lehmitz', 1970 © Anders Petersen. Courtesy Galerie VU’ / BnF, Estampes et photographie
4/5
Paris, 2006 © Anders Petersen. Courtesy Galerie VU’ / BnF, Estampes et photographie
5/5
'Close Distance', 2002 © Anders Petersen. Courtesy Galerie VU’ / BnF, Estampes et photographie

Against a background of incessant rumbling from the ongoing building works at the Richelieu national library, Anders Petersen’s works are suitably noisy and fractured. Tumultuous, vibrant, vivid and wild, his vision of life electrifies the whole room. 320 images are on display here, from the Café de Lehmitz, Hamburg series that made him famous in 1970 right up to his final peregrinations in Rome and Soho. Shots are judiciously arranged to find echoes between still lives, animals and human subjects; though his style has certainly evolved over the course of 40 years, the way in which he squares up to his subjects, eye to eye, has not changed.

‘A photo shouldn’t speak of photography, it should speak of life’, Petersen says during a video interview included in the exhibition. For him, the camera is just a tool to open the eyes of the viewer, to confront him with places that he will probably never visit – asylums, filth, marginality, the bizarre, the animal sensuality of a furtive fuck on the bonnet of a car in an underground car park.

The Swede mixes documentary themes with the urgency of street photography. Sticking as closely as possible to the ruined bodies that he captures, he manages to establish an intimate, troubling contact between the photographer, the subject, and whoever contemplates the finished product.

Opening hours: Tue-Sat 10am-7pm, Sun 12noon-7pm

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