The first publication to document a profound body of work by Bruno Serralongue, one of France’s most important contemporary artists.
Between 2006 and 2020, French photographer and artist Bruno Serralongue conducted a prolonged engagement with the community of refugees on their last stop in a long journey to reach England. The resulting photographs, which formed the basis for an exhibition at Paris’s Centre Pompidou in 2019, are published here for the first time.
Serralongue captured disparate moments in the lives of the exiles, their attempts to reach England and their provisional camps which were dismantled by the French government in 2020. Serralongue’s images employ a suspended temporality that contradicts the sensationalised images broadcast by the mass media, recalling the visual traditions of history painting more than photojournalism.
The slowness of his photography, a characteristic of working with a view camera, requires both a distance from, and a proximity with, the subjects photographed, achievable only due to a relationship of trust built with the inhabitants of the ‘Jungle’.
A total of 345 photographs from the Calais series are published here with texts by French philosopher Jacques Rancière and art historian Florian Ebner.
230mm x 280mm
No. of pages:
About the Artist
Bruno Serralongue (b. 1968) has developed a distinctive body of work that questions the truth of photographic representation and how images are produced, disseminated and circulated in contemporary contexts. He pursues traces of media events that marked key moments in regions facing geopolitical changes: global economic and social forums, celebrations of new independent nations such as Kosovo and South Sudan in the aftermaths of civil wars, strikes and labour conflicts. Instead of seeking spectacular images of these events in the voyeuristic and dramatic style of the photojournalists, Serralongue captures angles normally excluded from the mainstream media’s framing of ‘reality’ and surmounts considerable difficulties to cover events in his independent manner. Through images such as campfires in the campsite of striking workers at the New Fabris factory in Châtellerault, France, Serralongue symbolizes rage and determination in the face of exploitation and oppression.
Jacques Rancière (b. 1940) is a French philosopher, Professor of Philosophy at European Graduate School in Saas-Fee and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Paris VIII: Vincennes – Saint-Denis.
Florian Ebner (b. 1970) studied photography at the Ecole Nationale de la Photographie d'Arles and art history at Ruhr-Universität Bochum. He has headed the Photographic Collection at the Museum Folkwang, Essen, since late 2012.