An Inner Silence: The Portraits of Henri Cartier-Bresson

An Inner Silence: The Portraits of Henri Cartier-Bresson

  1. Foreword by Agnès Sire
  2. Introduction by Jean-Luc Nancy
  • ISBN 9780500288757
  • 24.00 x 20.00 cm
  • Paperback with flaps
  • 160pp
  • With 97 tritone illustrations
  • First published 2010
‘Relentlessly brilliant … as I turn the pages of this book I experience a sort of quiet awe’ – Black & White Photography
‘Totally arresting and utterly beautiful’ – Metro
‘Another release of spellbinding images from the master’s archive … one gets from his images a real sense of curiosity about the human spirit’ – Amateur Photographer
‘What an astonishing haul – and how gloriously they have been captured. Rembrandt would have loved this book’ – The Independent

Henri Cartier-Bresson was perhaps the finest and most influential imagemaker of the 20th century, and his portraits are among his best-known work. Over a fifty-year period, he photographed some of the most eminent personalities of the era, as well as ordinary people, chosen as subjects because of their striking and unusual features.

In 2003, the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson, which was created to provide a permanent home for his collected works, opened in Paris. This book is published to coincide with the first exhibition at the Fondation that is drawn entirely from those archives, and it features both well-known images and previously unpublished portraits.

Each photograph has been chosen because it perfectly embodies Cartier-Bresson’s description of what he was attempting to communicate in his work: ‘Above all I look for an inner silence. I seek to translate the personality and not an expression.’ The portraits reproduced here – discreet, without artifice – confirm once more the singular gift of Cartier-Bresson, who instinctively knew in which revealing fraction of a second to click the shutter.

Agnès Sire is the Director of the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson.
Jean-Luc Nancy is a Professor of Philosophy at the Université Marc Bloch, Strasbourg. Among his many books are The Inoperative Community, The Sense of the World and Being Singular Plural.

See our wide range of books by or about Henri Cartier-Bresson