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Emeric Lhuisset: Hundred Portraits of Demonstrators from Maydan Square in Ukraine

Emeric Lhuisset grew up in suburban Paris. Gradueted in arts (Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Paris - Ensba) and in geopolitics (University Panthéon-Sorbonne / Ecole Normale Superieur d’Ulm - Center for geostrategy). His works has been shown in numerous exhibitions around the world (Tate Modern in London, Museum Folkwang in Essen, Institut du monde arabe in Paris, Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Rencontres d’Arles, Sursock Museum in Beirut, CRAC Languedoc-Roussillon, Musée du Louvre Lens…).

Ukraine – 

On Maydan Square in Kiev, French photographer Émeric Lhuisset (b. 1983) created a compelling series of portraits of the demonstrators. He asked all of them two questions, which they answered on a sheet of paper:

– What would you like to see happening now?

– What do you think will happen?

With Maydan – Hundred Portraits, Lhuisset introduces us to the faces of the revolution in February 2014. The protests united thousands of Ukrainians who were tired of the government’s corruption and the Russian grip on their country. The situation escalated when protesters were fired upon by the authorities, leading to the death of more than 100 people – referred to as the ‘Heavenly Hundred’.

EL-Maydan-Hundred_Portraits

President Yanukovych and his government fled. For a short period of time, power belonged to the people. Realized during this moment when everything seemed possible, this series of 100 portraits conveys a shared and universal sense of hope. Be it in the eyes of the young nurse or the elderly Cossack, one can read the same determination, the same commitment. Together with the written interviews, each photograph becomes the testimony of a recent moment that is already long gone.

As the French art critic Adrien Goetz wrote in the introduction to the book, “The strength of these images goes with the force of these words, scribbled by each, but in the name of all (…)”.

Published by Andre Frere Editions, ‘Maydan – Hundred Portraits’ was selected among the 10 best Photography books of 2014 by Huis Marseille Museum Photo, Markus Schaden (Director of PhotoBookMuseum in Cologne) and among the Best Dutch Book Design 2014, Maydan – Hundred Portraits was also presented at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.

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