Tete-a-tete. Portraits by Henri Cartier-Bresson
Bulfinch Press | 2004-09-01 | ISBN: 0821225626 | 144 pages | PDF | 22 Mb
Henri Cartier-Bresson's Tete a Tete contains the photographer's portraits of some of the most potent icons of the latter half of the 20th century. The book is understated, yet powerful and challenging--a masterpiece of the photographer's art of composition and expression. Presented in nonchronological order, yet arranged to provide links and parallels in posture and facial likenesses, familiar icons easily mix with anonymous subjects: a very young Truman Capote in crumpled T-shirt, on the brink of literary fame; a very old Colette, who retains her inquisitorial gaze; Matisse with his birds; Sartre with his pipe; Igor Stravinsky, astonishingly similar in 1946 and 1967; a beaming Che Guevara. There are also group portraits of unknowns, but none the less resonant for that: besuited men in 1950s Iran, tribespeople from Kashmir, prostitutes in Mexico, the women of southern Spain, dressed eternally in black. As the art historian E.H. Gombrich comments in his introduction to Tete a Tete, in these portraits Cartier-Bresson moved significantly away from the received techniques of the "society" photographer. Instead, he "always preferred to lie in wait for the telling moment."