Friday, January 25, 2008

Photocartoon -the great René Maltête

Are photocartoons cartoons? For me they are. In my collection I have some photocartoonbooks. This kind of books are rare. You don’t find them very easy. In “Le Furet du Nord”, one of the biggest bookshops in Europe, (Place Général De Gaulle, Lille, France) I discovered a delightful specimen: “Des yeux plein les poches” by René Maltête (1930-2000,France).

You can see most of the pictures in the book here.

And? Convinced?

Vagabond photographer, poet, humorist, environmentalist before that time, René Maltête had the talent to grab with his lens unusual situations of our daily lives. Funny, poetic, tender, the photos of René Maltête were published in the world press: Stern, Life, Epoca, Camera, Punch, and many exhibits and postcards helped popularize his work.
His photo-gags are for the first time braught together in this album which pays tribute to the work of this great master of photographic humor. He died Nov. 28, 2000.
So what's your opinion on the photo-gags?

Read more (you can use Google Translate):
Maltete on Glénatbd
Book review
Comments on some photo-gags of Maltete
[Des Yeux plein les Poches - Cartoonbook File]


Anonymous said...

I like them very much.

Jean-Marie said...

You mention the photos as being ‘cartoons’. I am more restrictive. However, I have a few books of this kind: of course the book you have presented (it is the best that I know) and some other whose value is low. The idea is to add to pictures of politicians captions with text supposed to be funny. I have four sets of this kind all appeared during the presidency of Mitterrand. Their goal is a mockery of the president and his government. I rank a little higher books with photomontages like the three volumes of "Tout faux" which the author is the cartoonist Dadzu, accompanied by essays by Jean Amadou, books published by Robert Laffont in 1989, 90, 91.

Less relevant are the photomontages of the book "Le Général illustré”, published by Denoël in 1964.

There is also the book " Le sottisier des bords de route," which appeared in 1999 (éditions Hors Collection) but all the pictures of these route signs with truly ridiculous names only can amuse people understanding French.
Vous mentionnez les photos humoristiques comme étant du cartoon, mon acception est plus restrictive. J'ai cependant quelques livres de ce genre : bien sûr celui que vous avez présenté (c'est le meilleur que je connaisse) et d'autres dont la valeur est bien faible. Le principe est d'ajouter à des photos de personnalités politiques des bulles avec des textes sensés être drôles. Je possède quatre recueils de ce genre tous parus pendant la présidence de Mitterrand, leur but est de tourner en dérision ce président et ses gouvernements. Je placerai un peu au-dessus des livres de photomontages comme les trois volumes "Tout faux" dont l'auteur est le caricaturiste Dadzu, accompagné de textes de Jean Amadou, livres parus chez Robert Laffont en 1989, 90, 91.

Moins pertinents sont les photomontages du livre "Le Général illustré", paru chez Denoël en 1964.

Il y a aussi le livre "Le sottisier des bords de route", paru en 1999 aux éditions Hors Collection, mais toutes les photos de ces véritables panneaux indicateurs aux noms ridicules ne peuvent amuser que des personnes comprenant le français.