Denis Darzacq

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La Chute

In 2003, during the Gulf War, Denis Darzacq Travelled out to Algeria to photograph dancers during their rehearsal for a touring hip-hop show organized by two French dance companies. The young men who auditioned with such concentration knew that being chosen could change their lives and open international frontiers. Few years later, Darzacq was struck by the way these images showed young people suspended in space and embarked on a personal project. They escape a very fragile instant their life in suburban.

The models launched themselves into the space. There is nothing false in these scenes. These moments really occurred. There is no fiction, no retouching or special effects. Photographed in the courtyards of buildings or in streets in the 19th arrondissement of Paris, in Nanterre and Biarritz, these young people were just being themselves, simply performing jumps in a modern urban setting. 

For twenty years, Denis Darzacq has been capturing the sensations, the bodies, the emptiness and the world of his generation, through the prism of an aesthetic and graphic style that is uniquely his.

Virginie Chardin, mars 2007


Act 2

According to Denis Darzacq, "whoever we are, we always have something to learn from others". It was from this idea that the photographic series Act 2 was born.

The story begins in 2009 when Denis Darzacq works alongside people with disabilities for his series Act. Then, in 2015, the photographic series Act 2 begins. For this new project, he asked dancers of the Paris Opera to take inspiration from these photos to improvise dance movements in the heart of the city of Paris.

This new series is a dialogue between two worlds that seem opposites but which are linked by the grace and beauty of the act, an illustration of this unknown language.


Denis Darzacq Photographer


French photographer Denis Darzacq was born and raised in Paris, a city in which he still lives and works today. He graduated from the ENSAD (French National School for Decorative Arts) in 1986 and started his photographic career following the French rock scene.

In 1994 he began his first work titled “Only Heaven”, which he exhibited at various photo festivals. In 1999 the French Ministry of Culture commissioned him a body of work on French youth. The interaction between man and urban space and, more precisely, the suburbs have been a driving force in his recent work. 

Darzacq won the 2007 World Press Photo prize in the category “Arts & Entertainment” for his series “La chute” and the prestigeous french prize "Niepce" in 2012.

He has published a number of books including“Act” (2012),  "Hyper” (2009),“La Chute” (2007), “Bobigny centre ville” (2006, co-author Marie Desplechin), “Le ciel étoilé au-dessus de ma tête” (2004), “Ensembles 1997/2000” (2001).

Exhibited extensively throughout France and internationally, his work is also held in both public and private collections including the Pompidou Center, Fred and Laura Bidwell Art Collection, the FNAC (French National Contemporary Art Fund), the Nicéphore Niépce Museum andThe Caldic Collection in Netherland.