Various works: 2008 – 2011, Luc Delahaye's photography

Luc Delahaye Various works: 2008 – 2011

132nd Ordinary Meeting of the Conference, OPEC headquarters, Vienna, Austria, 15 September, 2004.

It’s clear that I don’t really photograph the world as it is, but either as it should not be – hardship – or as it should be – man restored to history, an uncertain destiny yet a possibility of fellowship.

Les Pillards, Port-au-Prince, Haiti, 17 January 2010.

A Mass Grave Near Snagovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, 16 November 2006.

House to House, Tawergha, Libya, 16 May 2011.

A Lunch at the Belvedere, Davos, World Economic Forum, 22 January 2004.

Aftermath in Meulaboh Acehprovince, Indonesia, 9 January 2005.

Karni Crossing Demo, Gaza, 23 May 2008.

Ambush, Ramadi, Iraq, 22 July 2006.

A Rally of the Opposition Candidate Alexander Milinkevich, Minsk, Belarus, 12 March 2006.

Artist's Statement

I try to put myself in situations that I feel have a certain relevance regarding what we call a shared destiny. The reality I’m interested in is that of people who struggle to act upon it as much as they are subject to it. I sometimes work where power presents itself as a spectacle, as an event produced for or with the media, and my pictures may then take an ironic undertone. But I photograph the ordinary man more often than the leader.

I usually stay at the distance where the human relationships are visible, multiple, active and where they remain problematic. I’m interested in narration and in photography’s phenomenological hold on the real.

There’s often a certain degree of lyricism in my images. It remains fairly cool and contained, but it colours them and seems to arrive as soon as they represent people, especially when they’re involved in an action with a tragic dimension. It’s a quality that has disappeared from advanced societies, where we are limited to the individual, utilitarian and ultimately absurd gesture. This gives me another reason, probably, to go to those places of hardship.

About the photographer


1962, France



Based in


Luc Delahaye is known for his large-scale colour works depicting conflicts, world events or social issues. His pictures are characterised by detachment, directness and rich details, a documentary approach which is countered by dramatic intensity and a narrative structure. Delahaye started his career as a photojournalist. He joined the photo agency Sipa Press in 1985 and dedicated himself to war reporting. From 1994 to 2004, he was a member of Magnum Photos. His war photography was characterised by its raw, direct recording of news and often combined a perilous closeness to events with an intellectual detachment in questioning his own presence. In 2001, Delahaye ceased collaboration with the press and conducted a radical formal change. His books include Luc Delahaye 2006 – 2010 (2011), History (2003), Une Ville (2003), Winterreise (2000), L’Autre (1999), Memo (1996) and Portraits/1 (1996).

Delahaye has won numerous awards including the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize (2005), Prix Niepce (2002), Robert Capa Gold Medal (2002, 1992), ICP Infinity Award (2001) and the Oskar Barnack Award (2000). His solo exhibitions include: Galerie Nathalie Obadia, Paris/Brussels (2011), J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles (2007), Sprengel Museum, Hannover (2006), Cleveland Museum of Art (2005) and Huis Marseille, Amsterdam (2004). Selected group exhibitions include: Intense Proximite, La Triennale, Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2012), War Photography: History of Armed Conflict and Its Aftermath, Houston Museum of Fine Arts (2012), New Documentary Forms, Tate Modern, London (2011), Documents, Memory of the Future, MARCO, Vigo (2007) and Click-Double-click, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels (2006).