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Hyde Park

  • Object:

    Photograph

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1938 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Cartier-Bresson, Henri (photographer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Gelatin silver print

  • Museum number:

    PH.616-1978

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case X, shelf 918, box H

  • Public access description

    The Victoria and Albert Museum has over 440 photographs by Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908-2004), a French photographer who is considered to be one of the fathers of photojournalism and masters of candid photography. He sought to capture the 'everyday' in his photographs and took great interest in recording human activity. He wrote, "For me the camera is a sketch book, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity, the master of the instant which, in visual terms, questions and decides simultaneously. In order to 'give a meaning' to the world, one has to feel involved in what one frames through the viewfinder. This attitude requires concentration, discipline of mind, sensitivity, and a sense of geometry. It is by economy of means that one arrives at simplicity of expression."

    As a reporter and co-founder of the Magnum photography agency, Cartier-Bresson accepted his responsibility to supply information to a world in a hurry. He documented the liberation of Paris, the collapse of the Nationalist regime in China, Gandhi's funeral and the partitioning of Berlin. Cartier-Bresson helped develop the street photography style that has influenced generations of photographers that followed.

  • Physical description

    Black and white photograph of an elderly woman sitting on a sheet of newspaper on a bench in the park, wearing a raincoat and hat.

  • Dimensions

    Length: 39.5 cm, Height: 29.5 cm

  • Descriptive line

    Black and white photograph by Henri Cartier-Bresson depicting an elderly woman sitting on a sheet of newspaper on a bench in Hyde Park, wearing a raincoat and hat. London, 1938.

  • Collection code

    Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection