Mur de Berlin Ouest, Allemagne, 1962


Gelatin silver print

23.8 x 35.5 cm (9 3/8 x 14 in.)

Three men standing on top of a street cabinet are seen from the back. They all look at a bare wall barring the whole frame, which closes access to a street of the Prenzlauerberg district of Berlin.

The wall that divides the former capital of Germany has been built for a year when Henri Cartier-Bresson takes this pictures from the western side of the city, under the control of the Federal Republic of Germany. This sober composition that doesn't require any caption eloquently shows the surrealistic situation in which Berliners have suddenly been placed. The French photographer once again demonstrates the sharpness of his eye by showing great contemporary History through the subjective experience of anonymous civilians.

Mur de Berlin Ouest, Allemagne, 1962 (West Berlin Wall, Germany) is presented for the first time as part of the Pinault Collection in the monographic exhibition Henri Cartier-Bresson. Le Grand Jeu at Palazzo Grassi in Venice, in 2020.