Biography

Luc Delahaye (born 1962) is a French photographer known for his large-scale color works depicting conflicts, world events or social issues. His pictures are characterized by detachment, directness and rich details, a documentary approach which is however countered by dramatic intensity and a narrative structure.

Delahaye started his career as a photojournalist. He joined the photo agency Sipa Press in the mid-1980s and dedicated himself to war reporting. In 1994, he joined the cooperative Magnum Photos and Newsweek Magazine (he left Magnum in 2004). He distinguished himself during the 1980s and 1990s in Lebanon, Afghanistan, Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Chechnya. His war photography was characterized by its raw, direct recording of news and often combined a perilous closeness to events with an intellectual detachment in the questioning of his own presence. This concern was later mirrored in minimalist series published as books, notably Portrait/1, a set of photobooth portraits of homeless people and L'Autre, a series of stolen portraits made in the Paris subway. With Winterreise, he explored the social consequences of the economic depression in Russia. In 2001, Delahaye conducted a radical formal change. Documenting conflicts, political events or social issues, his pictures are made using large or medium format cameras, sometimes edited on computers and are shown in museums. While exploring the boundaries between reality and the imaginary, they constitute documents-monuments of immediate history, and urge reflection "upon the relationships among art, history and information".

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