THE FACE IS WHAT FORBIDS US TO KILL
– Emmanuel Levinas –
My name is Jean-Pierre Duvergé. Originally from Bordeaux, I settled in Cergy-Pontoise (95000) near Paris since 1981.
I grew up in the city at the same time as my children. I have been practicing photography since the age of 20 but my professional activity has prevented me from devoting myself to it. Today, the time found allows me to realize the ideas that have germinated in me. Everyone is talking about diversity, everyone says it’s wealth, and Cergy-Pontoise in particular where 130 nationalities cohabit.
The dream for a portraitist. An image worth more than long speeches, I decided to show this human diversity by photographing anonymous people who could be our neighbors, the shopkeeper we go to every day, a person who walks in the street that you look at and who looks at you, a smile sometimes too. I privilege the faces because they express the deep being, the black and white to go to the essentials and to catch the glance, because it is through him that the humans communicate: it is the portal of the soul.
It is no longer a question of photogeny, but of reflecting the beauty of the human race through its diversity. I am aware that the man is capable of the worst baseness but what I want to show is the infinite tenderness and the depth which it conceals. If we feel this beauty, then, within us, an ethic develops, that is to say a morality freed from social or cultural constraints because, as François Cheng suggests, “aesthetic emotion is born of ethics”. that is to say finally the recognition of the Other as subject. The album “Cergy’s Faces” became the fraternity’s album. It includes nearly 700 portraits to date but it continues to grow.
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