Raymond Cauchetier's photographs of French New Wave Cinema are internationally acclaimed and are some of the iconic pictures of the period. According to Marc Vernet:
The power of Raymond Cauchetier's photography does not stem simply from the exceptional character of the stars he photographed, or from the artistic dimension of the directors for whom he worked...but from the fact that he, before anyone else, knew just how to capture the mood of what would become known as the Nouvelle Vague.
In 1959 Cauchetier was hired as the on-set photographer for Godard's first feature, A Bout de Souffle. He photographed not only the famous moments, such as Jean Seberg and Jean Paul Belmondo walking down the Champs Elysées, Seberg in her New York Herald Tribune t-shirt, but also behind-the-scenes glimpses which document the filmmaking process. Unlike other on-set photographers whose aim was simply to create stills which could be used for publicity purposes, Cauchetier approached the set as a photojournalist, bearing witness to a defining moment in cinematic history. The resulting images offer an incredible insight into the genius of Godard and document his highly unorthodox methods.
Along with A Bout de Souffle, the exhibition includes images from Godard's Une Femme est Une Femme (1960), Jacques Rozier's Adieu Philippine (1960), Jacques Demy's Lola (1960), starring Anouk Aimée, and Francois Truffaut's Jules et Jim (1962) starring Jean Moreau, La Peau Douce (1963) and Baisers Volés (1968).
Raymond Cauchetier was largely a self-taught photographer. His first photographs were taken in his thirties while serving in the press corps of the French Air Force in Indochina. Upon his return to Paris, Cauchetier began mixing with a circle of young film critics and filmmakers, among them Jean Luc Godard which lead to his involvement with the French New Wave which lasted until 1968. He has traveled extensively and taken photographs in Cambodia and has also photographed throughout Europe for his work on Romanesque sculpture. Several books of his photographs have been published, including Photos de cinéma: Autour de la nouvelle vague 1958-1968. His work has been showcased in Aperture Magazine as well as The New Yorker Magazine.
Raymond Cauchetier lives in Paris.
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