Some photographers have the good fortune to find a mentor in their young years who both inspires and encourages them. Jessica Backhaus found one in Gisele Freund, the great French photographer remembered for her portraits (肖像) of artists, especially writers. Gisele was a wonderful, sensitive portraitist whose pictures of Virginia Woolf, Andre Gide, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw, Jean Cocteau, and a long list of well-known artists are unforgettable.21·cn·jy·com
Jessica, a young photographer from Germany, was studying photography in Paris when she met the famous Gisele Freund, on November 5, 1992. Slowly a friendship developed, lasting until Gisele’s death, in 2000; and in a way it still continues today. Gisele was generous in her concern for a new generation of photographers, and Jessica took to heart her advice to forget about technique and to take pictures with her eyes and heart. To thank her, Jessica decided to take the series of pictures published in the book One Day in November.21*cnjy*com
One day, before Jessica moved to New York, Gisele suggested that she write about their friendship. The book One Day in November begins with Jessica’s essay on their shared memories and conversations, followed by her photographs. She calls it a visual poem, pointing out that she expresses herself best in pictures rather than words.
The excellent photographs from her book can be seen in a splendid exhibition at Laurence Mille