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L'enfant flou at Agathe Gaillard Gallery

One of Jean-Philippe Charbonnier’s pictures, “the blurry child”, a “split” image, inspired this exhibition showing twenty photographers’ works whose visible flaws (lab accidents) add magic and mystery. A quote by Louis Pasteur “fate is beneficial to ready souls” is the exhibition’s title and underlying spirit.

In the MEP collection, there is a well-known photograph entitled: “l'enfant flou” (Blurred Child) by Jean-Philippe Charbonnier. Although Jean-Philippe is no longer here to give his opinion, we know that this image, the result of an incomprehensible accident (no one has been able to explain the blurred and sharp appearance of the lamppost), appeared in 1947 as a botched photo. And yet Jean-Philippe always loved it and kept it among his favourite photos, like a precious enigma depicting him as a child.

It’s true that, abandoned by his father and brought up among some very brilliant people, he couldn’t have really known who he was. This schoolboy, alone in the street, looking straight at the photographer, resembles his portraits of children. Other photographers have had similar experiences of a mysterious, accidental photo, like a gift from heaven or something that suddenly emerges from the unconscious.

The following have agreed to show these photos in this exhibition: Claude Alexandre, Sonia Andreu, Édouard Boubat, Luc Choquer, Jean-Pierre Evrard, Bernard Faucon, Thierry Girard, Vincent Godeau, Patricia de Gorostarzu, Florence Gruère, Bernard Guillot, Roland Laboye, Hiro Matsuoka, Marie-Paule Nègre, Pierre Reimer, Marc Riboud, Jérôme Soret, Jean-François Spircigo and Colette Urbajtel.

— L’Oeil de la photographie, October 2010

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