Harry Gruyaert

  • Belgium
  • fr
  • en [cc]
  • 65'
Harry Gruyaert, photographer


Harry Gruyaert has a rare ability to compose colour. He avoids the pitfalls of the genre by creating nuanced images, with a feeling of loneliness, of tender irony, of the “beauty of ugliness”. A form of “Belgitude”, to echo the words of Aimé Césaire. But Harry Gruyaert is not “just” Belgian-Flemish; here we understand that his life abroad afforded him a clearer view of Belgium. We also understand that this silent hypersensitive is inhabited by photography.

What you will find in this film

Belgian identity seen by Harry Gruyaert • A sensitivity to colour • The art of shifting to see better • The vital necessity of photographing • The photographer's feeling of freedom • The place of the photographer's family • The happy wandering of the gaze • The community of New York artists • The Magnum family • The rigour of printing • Photographing TV • photographing to protect yourself from the world 

It was more the beauty of ugliness that interested me, this "weird country" with its "weird mentalities"... this pretty surreal stuff...

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Further exploration


• INDIA, Harry Gruyaert, Atelier EXB, Paris, 2020

• HARRY GRUYAERT, pub. Textuel, Paris, 2015

• MAROC, HARRY GRUYAERT, pub. Textuel, Paris, 2013

• ROOTS : BELGIQUE 1970 - 1980, pub. Xavier Barral, Paris, 2012

• MOSCOU, pub. Be-pôles, Paris, 2010

• TV SHOTS, pub. Steidl Verlag, Göttingen, 2007

• HARRY GRUYAERT, photo-poche, pub. Actes Sud, Arles, 2006