Pascal Maitre Mali, 2019
Dozo traditional hunters from the Bambara people drafted into a militia. They are assisted and supported by the Malian government, which makes them fight against the Fula people, who have joined the Islamists. © Pascal Maitre/Myop/Panos
At that, being very modest, the photographer says, ‘My work is basically very easy. The hardest thing is actually getting to the place where something of interest is happening. Once you’re physically there, pressing the button is no big deal’.
Pascal Maitre on principle never uses digital cameras. At the end of an average day, he has five exposed films. In many cases, he chooses two or three best pictures of the reportage to be included in books and exhibitions. The others are used to illustrate texts in the mass media.
The photographer’s friends point out his unique serenity and ability to calm down even the most strung-up individuals, Maitre has come across in the war zones. Also unusual is his ‘panoramic’ vision determining the quality of his photographs.
Pascal Maitre has always been lucky. Some African tribes with a primitive communal social system have often been apprehensive of the man with a camera, thinking it to be a weapon. Besides, some local priests still believe that an individual’s photograph takes away part of his/her soul. Nevertheless, the photographer has always managed to arrange photo sessions and prepare as true-to-fact reportages as possible. He has never been arrested. The international press has always had him in the focus of attention. Maitre’s exhibitions are held on the most prestigious world platforms including the Maison Europ enne de la Photographie, France, the Vis pour l’image Festival in Perpignan, France, etc.
The exhibition was organised with the participation of Le Figaro Magazine.