French street photographer – Robert Doisneau

I admire the photography of Robert Doisneau  and I’ve been wanting to do a post on his photographic art for ages. He is one of France’s favourite photographers, best known for his street photography and his many insightful and playful images on everyday French life. As one of the first pioneers of outdoor photojournalism, his prolific output covered ironic images of amusing juxtapositions, mingling social classes, and eccentrics in contemporary Paris streets and cafes.

Roberts deep appreciation of the pure moments he witnessed on his journeys around France was continually evident in his images and was his ongoing affirmation of the beauty of life and his love of  humanity. I feel this personal quality bestowed him the gift of being in the right place at the right time to observe these visual treats unfolding.

Doisneau captured a charming vision of human frailty,  peoples foibles and life as a series of quiet, incongruous moments. He made the claim,  “ the marvels of daily life are exciting; no movie director can arrange the unexpected that you find in the street. “   His photographs over the course of several decades encapsulated a remarkable account of life on the streets of France and immortalized the magic of Paris for posterity. He appears to have a genuine empathy for his subjects and his images exude a touching depth of feeling.


Angels And Leeks1953 by Robert Doisneau

‘Angels And Leeks’ – 1953



Concierge rue du Dragon Doisneau

‘Concierge rue du Dragon ‘- Robert Doisneau

Robert Doisneau - Shop - Alberto Giacometti in his studio

Surrealist sculptor Alberto Giacometti in his studio – 1957

( Robert Doisneau shop  – virtual galleries of photographs – Doisneau  – Painters and sculptors series )



 Awesome-Streetlife-photography Robert Doisneau

Robert Doisneau – Paris Seine, 1949



Woman with dog. Paris.Ca.1890

Woman with dog  Paris.Ca.1890

Photographer unknown



Vice et Versailles photo by Robert Doisneau

Barbarian prisoner and Callipygian Venus, Versailles Robert Doisneau  – 1966




Venus Grabbed by the Throat, 1964 - Robert Doisneau

‘Venus Grabbed by the Throat’, 1964



Robert Doisneau Small children milk-1945

 ‘Small children milk’ -1945  Robert Doisneau



Strongman-by Robert-Doisneau Muscle man lifting weights

 ‘Banquistes the Place de la Bastille ‘- 1945

( Fairground series )



Street-Musicians,-London1956 - Robert Doisneau

‘Street Musicians’, London   1956




Bebop cellar, Vieux Colombier 1951 Robert-Doisneau

‘Bebop cellar, Vieux Colombier’  1951 – Robert Doisneau




The painter and his model, Paris 1949 - photogrphed by Robert Doisneau

‘The painter and his model’, Paris 1949



The Painter of the Pont des Arts - photo by Robert Doisneau

‘The Painter of the Pont des Arts’

” You’ve got to struggle against the pollution of intelligence in order to become an animal with very sharp instincts – a sort of intuitive medium – so that taking a photograph becomes a magical act, and slowly other more suggestive images begin to appear behind the visible image, for which the photographer cannot be held responsible.” ~ Robert Doisneau

The potter's wheel, Saint Armand en Puisaye 1945 by Robert Doisneau

‘The potter’s wheel’,  Saint Armand en Puisaye   1945




The Shower -1949 Robert Doisneau - a small girl in a tub taking a watering can shower

‘The Shower’ – 1949  Robert Doisneau




The Children of Place Hebert - Robert Doisneau- French photographer

‘The Children of Place Hebert’ – Robert Doisneau




Jacques Tati Monsieur Hulot's Holiday

Jacques Tati – Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday

A French movie full of sight gags, irony and inimitable warmth and charm, not dissimilar to Robert Doisneau’s  photographs.




 1948 Robert Doisneau A woman gliding past a bystander in Paris

‘une femme passe’ 1948  – Robert Doisneau




French photographer Robert Doisneau - a man jumping over rubbish in the gutter

 Robert Doisneau




Robert Doisneau French photography - children playing in the street - France

‘Street Lamp on rue Vilin’, 1969



Robert-Doisneau- Snow in New York

Robert Doisneau- ‘Snow in New York  Maurice Baquet’  1960




Robert Doisneau - photo of children playing ring a rosie

‘Ronde d’enfants devant l’abbatiale de Marmoutier’  – Robert Doisneau,    1945




A streetsweeper mending his broom-Robert-Doisneau

  ‘Paris street sweeper’  – Robert Doisneau

Mimile and Maiss French Circus performers - Robert Doisneau

Bob and Rick  – Le cirque by Robert Doisneau




-Robert Doisneau, Dream Girls, 1952 - A man lying on his bed admiring his pin up girls

Robert Doisneau,  ‘Dream Girls’   1952

‘” I like people for their weaknesses and faults. I get on well with ordinary people. We talk. We start with the weather, and little by little we get to the important things. When I photograph them it is not as if I were examining them with a magnifying glass, like a cold and scientific observer. It’s very brotherly. And it’s better, isn’t it, to shed some light on those people who are never in the limelight.” ~ Robert Doisneau




Robert Doisneau –The diver Pont d'Iena –1945 - Swimming pool diver near the Eiffel Tower

‘The diver Pont d’Iena’ – Robert Doisneau –1945




Les Chien du Marquis de Cuevas, Bois de Boulogne- dogs arriving in a car

‘Les Chien du Marquis de Cuevas, Bois de Boulogne’



laccordeoniste-rue-mouffetard Paris 1951 by Robert Doisneau - A seated man playing his accordion on a busy corner

 ‘L’Accordéoniste de la Rue Mouffetard’

Paris  1951

Doisneau was able to fix this radiant gravity that isolated a man from the crowd, and in these moments of grace create an ” illusion of time ” as if in a ” geometric dream. ” – Jean-François Chevrier



Hunawihr - les-vendanges Robert Doisneau photograph

Hunawihr – les-vendanges



Next To The Tower, 1985 Robert Doisneau

‘Next To The Tower’, 1985  – Robert Doisneau

( Getty Images )



A pillow burlap, Paris 1952 Robert Doisneau three homeless men sleeping on the street

‘A pillow burlap, Paris’  1952 – Robert Doisneau




 Robert Doisneau photo a man seated in his parlour

 photo by Robert Doisneau




Robert Doisneau photography - a man walking his little white dog on a long lead

 photo by Robert Doisneau



French photography Robert Doisneau - a female street accordionist

 Paris street accordionist – Robert Doisneau




Doisneau a man sneaks a peek at a nude painting in a shop window

‘Un Regard Oblique’ Sidelong glance, 1948 – Robert Doisneau




Robert Doisneau on street with camera 1983

Robert Doisneau – 1983

( 1912 -1994 )



Paris society - Robert Doisneau

photo by Robert Doisneau




Usine de porcelaine Tharaud Robert-Doisneau

‘Usine de porcelaine Tharaud’  – Robert Doisneau




La-jeune-fille-au-velo.-Robert-Doisneau Father teaching his daughter to ride a bike

Robert Doisneau- ‘First cycling lesson of a father to his daughter’,  1960s.



woman-and rooster on a park bench Robert Doisneau

Un enchantement simple, 1950s





‘Atelier de Pierre Imans’, 1945




Portrait-of-a Lion- Zoo de Vincennes - 1943 Robert Doisneau

‘Portrait of a Lion – Zoo de Vincennes’ – 1943  Robert Doisneau



1 Comment

  1. Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    peccato che, almeno qualche volta, Doisneau abbia clamorosamente mentito

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