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The collection is the outcome of many of years of close collaboration and mutual trust between the Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie and the photographers whose work is shown at the festival. It now includes nearly 3,500 pictures ceded by over 470 photographers since 1976, when the practice was established of having each photographer participating in the festival donate one of his or her exhibited works for the collection. Every year, new photographs are added to this unique group, which the Rencontres curates, protects and promotes by introducing it to as many people as possible.

Thanks to a financing from the region Provence-Alpes-Côté d'Azur, the entire collection as been digitalized. The prints are today stored in the museum Reattu in Arles, precious partner of the festival. Created in 1965 by Lucien Clergue and Jean-Maurice Rouquette, the photographic department of the museum has an exceptional collection as well, the first photographic collection in a beaux arts museum (more informations available on their website).

The 50th anniversary of the Rencontres d'Arles is the opportunity to travel around the memory of the festival from its collection. An eclectic and endearing collection, made of famous and unknown, which is telling its story from advances to changes, from small black and white prints to monumental in color, from the framed photography to the installation.
  • Image présentation

    Les Arènes, 1851, Edouard Denis Baldus (1813-1889)
    © Edouard Denis Baldus / Coll. Les Rencontres d'Arles