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HERSCHTRITT, Léon

PORTRAIT-HERSCHTRITTBorn 1936 in Paris.

Lives and works in Paris.


Léon Herschtritt began taking photographs in 1956 and came home from his military service with the documentary series Les Gosses d’Algérie (‘Kids of Algeria’), which was shown in 1960 at the Maison des Beaux-Arts in Paris and for which he was awarded the Niépce prize. After working as a photojournalist for France Observateur, La Vie catholique illustrée and Réalités, he became a freelance correspondent in Paris for the London agency Camera Press.

He worked on feature films as well as news reports. He took part in several exhibitions at the French National Library, the National Collection of Contemporary Art (FNAC) and elsewhere in France. In 1966 he was awarded the Gens d’Images prize for the design of the book Au Hasard des femmes. In the same year he was the subject of an episode of the TV photography show Chambre noire.

In 1993 he worked as an antique dealer and expert in vintage photography. He set up a gallery in a Paris flea market which was transferred to Saint-Germain-des-Prés in 1998. In 2006 Léon Herschtritt celebrated 50 years as a photographer and began to explore the contents of his own archives.

In 2008 two exhibitions were devoted to his work in Berlin and five more are in preparation for 2009 in Germany and France.

Léon Herschtritt is represented by La Collection corporation, Paris.


He presented his work at the Rencontres d’Arles in 2009: Style and feeling, at the Grande Halle.