© Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Aug. 1927, Bibi, l’ombre et le reflet, Hendaye

Like Peter Pan, at just seven years of age Jacques-Henri Lartigue decided to dedicate his life to the pursuit of happiness and never growing up. His father gave him the ultimate present with which to document a lifetime’s enjoyment: a camera, and luckily for us, Lartigue was determined to photograph everything. He did indeed lead a charmed life, and all the excitement and allure of the last days of the belle époque are epitomised in some of the most seductively stylish photographs ever taken.

Lartigue is considered by many to be one of the greatest photographers of the 20th Century, and for someone who never intended his photographs to be exhibited, they have quite rightly become the absolute last word in French style, glamour and luxury. For Lartigue himself, his photographs were merely “snaps” for his personal albums, and remained so until they were seen in 1962 by John Sarkovsky, then director of Museum of Modern Art in New York. He immediately arranged an exhibition of a selection of some of Lartigue’s now best-known images, though the treasure-trove of beauty and elegance extended far beyond these. (+)

Current exhibitionInstants de vie is own view at Fifty One Fine Art Photography, Belgium. Exhibition dates: Sep 07, 2012 - Oct 20, 2012.

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