Our Artists

Raymond Depardon

Photographer, great reporter and film-maker, Raymond Depardon has given new life to photography and documentary films. In his photography and films, he uses great sensitivity to confront us with reality.


The early years

Raymond Depardon took his first photographs on the Garet farm (Rhone) where he grew up. Having worked as an apprentice in a photography-optician’s shop in Villefranche-sur-Saône, he moved to Paris in 1958 and worked as an assistant to Louis Foucherand.

From 1960, he worked as a reporter for the Delmas Agency. He covered a large number of events abroad, including the building of the Berlin Wall and the Algerian War.

The Gamma agency and the early films

In 1967, Raymond Depardon founded the Gamma Agency with Hubert Henrotte, Hugues Vassal and Léonard de Remy, then Gilles Caron. The agency’s attitude was to give the photographer greater autonomy and responsibility.

Along side his career as a photographer, Raymond Depardon produced Ian Palach, his first short film, in Czechoslovakia.

In 1973, when he took over the management of the Gamma Agency, Raymond Depardon was awarded the Robert Capa Gold Medal for the book Chili (co-written with David Burnett and Chas Geresten).

In 1974, he covered the Françoise Claustre affair, in which a French ethnologist was held hostage in Chad.

In the same year he completed his first full-length documentary film on Valérie Giscard d’Estaing’s presidential campaign. The film, 1974, une partie de campagne, was not shown in cinemas until 2002.

The Magnum Agency

In 1979, he left Gamma to join the Magnum Agency. He covered the civil wars in the Lebanon and Afghanistan. The photographs taken at the time were published in the Notes collection published that year.

In 1981, he became the European Vice-Chairman of Magnum

In 1989, he covered the fall of the Berlin Wall.


In 1981, Raymond Depardon and Pascale Dauman founded the film production company Double D. The first film that the company produced, Reporters, received considerable public and critical acclaim and won the “César” for the best documentary.

Alongside his career as a film-maker, Raymond Depardon won the National Grand Prix for Photography in 1991.

In 1985, New York, NY won the “César” for the best short film.

In 1994, the film Délits flagrants won the “César” for the best documentary and the Joris-Ivens Prize. This first film about the legal institutions was followed in 2003 by 10ème chambre, instants d’audience presented in Cannes as part of the official selection.

A view of rural France

In 2001, he brought out Profils paysans, the first of a series of three films about rural France. This was followed by Profils paysans: le quotidien, presented at the Berlin festival in 2002, and La Vie Moderne which won the Jury’s Tribute Prize in Cannes and the Louis Delluc Prize for the best French film of 2008.

The book La terre des paysans was published in the same year, the sum of 40 years’ work on rural life.


Raymond Depardon in Languedoc Roussillon, 14 March 2009 to 31 January 2010:
“On the initiative of the Languedoc-Roussillon Regional Council, 'Languedoc-Roussillon Cinema' is organising and coordinating a major event based on Raymond Depardon’s view of the Languedoc-Roussillon region and, in particular, his photographic and film work”.
>> visit the Languedoc-Roussillon Regional Council website for further information

Useful links

For further information on Raymond Depardon’s biography, bibliography and filmography:
>> visit Raymond Depardon’s website Palmeraie et désert
>> visit the Magnum Agency website

Raymond Depardon 's products at Nouvelles Images

> Prints and posters

Prints and posters Nha Trang, 1992 Prints and posters Hôtel Martinez, 1985 Prints and posters Marathon in Montreal streets, 1976 Prints and posters Libya, 1978

> Postcards

Postcards Libya, 1978 Postcards Libya, 1978

> Greeting cards

Greeting cards Libya, 1978

Nationality(ies) : French
Born on : 06/07/1942
Profile : Filmmaker, Photographer, Reporter
Artistic current(s) : Photojournalism
Theme(s) covered : Events, Landscapes - Nature, Policy, Portraits - Characters, World cities, Travel