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Champs de Bataille

Yan Morvan

Editions Photosynthèses

Publication date : 2015/11/11
Weight 4482 g / Dimensions 26.3 x 32.5 cm / 660 pages / french
ISBN 9782363980120

“Why and how to photograph the war?

Do we want to inform, to participate in the movement of history? How to tell the unconceivable – images of horror succeed images of horror. The spectacularization of the world by television, the press, the Internet and real-time information has diminished our capital of empathy and our ability to be moved by the misfortune of others.

In 2004, with a Deardorff 20 × 25 camera, I began a series on battlefields. Did these places still tell the story?

Without giving in to raw emotion, I wanted to address the conscience, to show, through landscapes that are sometimes insignificant, a “geography” of human madness.
I was looking for another way to show a reflection on the image and the reality of war. I started to photograph the battlefields of France, the beaches of the D-Day landings, then those of Europe, our family which has so often been torn apart. My project is ambitious: to show the land on which men fought, to tell the story, to reflect on this thought of Heraclitus:

“Conflict / Is the father of all beings, the king of all beings / To some he gave form to gods, to others to men, / He made some slave, others free.” (Fragment 53) “It must be known / That conflict is common [or universal] / That discord is right / And that all things are born and die according to discord and necessity.” (Fragment 80)

I have traveled the battlefields of Europe and the Pacific Ocean, Africa, America, Asia. Some sites are duly listed, marked out, others deserve a meticulous work of investigation and localization – some States do not seem to wish to commemorate the defeats or are amnesic… ”

Yan Morvan

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