June 2nd - July 16th, 2016
From September 24th until January 22nd 2022
Thursday, November 4th 2021
agnès b. presents the seventh season of its Fab collection dedicated to the history of photography.
Over the years, agnès b. has built up an important collection of contemporary art, first presented at the Abattoirs de Toulouse in 2004, but before that, it was the richness of its photographic holdings that was the subject of two exhibitions, in 2000 at the Centre National de la Photographie in Paris and in 2002 at the Pavillon des Arts in Nogent-sur-Marne. Then in 2008, the prestigious C/O Berlin hosted an exhibition of his photographs, in parallel with the publication of a monograph of his collection by JPRingier.
The agnès b. collection, with over 7,000 works, is not based on any particular medium. Agnès b. collects paintings, sculptures, installations and videos, but it has to be said that photography plays an important role, with 2,500 prints.
In 2000, agnès b wrote about photography:
“… If it’s a collection, it looks more like a free assembly than a thoughtful construction. I could even say that it’s the photos themselves that have imposed themselves one by one, one calling on the other. Perhaps each photo, by its very quality, demanded another that was as beautiful, as moving, or as essential, that’s the common thread…
I feel like an amateur in both senses of the word, and that’s a nice word. I believe in eclecticism and refuse to prefer this one to that one – they all have their place.
What counts is the “snapshot”, the photographer, in a gesture that’s surely spiritual, chooses the moment in his life, in life, that jumps out at him, what he chooses to say ….. In the same gesture, he can also create fictions, deceiving us for the fun of it, telling us stories that are not true, serious or light-hearted. What a freedom! And that’s why I love photography “ agnès b., June 2000
For this exhibition, agnès b. has decided to take the viewer on a chronological tour, starting with a dozen silver gelatino-bromide negative chronophotographic plates, albumin prints, negative papers, sepia photographs and silver countertype prints, dating from the second half of the 19th century, then showing the attachment of photographers, and of the collector, to black and white prints until the 1980s, and culminating in the explosion of color photography in the 1990s.
This chronological bias in no way precludes the “free assembly” that agnès b. likes to call “elective affinities“.
Some of the artists exhibited : Giacomo Caneva, Eugène Atget, Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Man Ray, Martin Guisinde, Nicephore Niepce, Willy Ronis, Brassaï, Man Ray, Walker Evans, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Berenice Abbott, Helen Levitt, Weegee, Saul Leiter, Seydou Keïta, Lucien Hervé, Kenneth Anger, Aaron Siskind, Malick Sidibé, Jonas Mekas, Sir Cecil Beaton, André Kertész, Nan Goldin, Maripol, David Bailey, Sigmar Polke, Mark Cohen, Duane Michals, Martin Parr, Roman Signer, Massimo Vitali, Beat Streuli, Ralph Gibson, August Sander, Richard Billingham, Ryan McGinley ,William Eggleston, Georges Tony Stoll.
Opening on Thursday, December 7 2023, 6-9 p.m.