1948. French. Born in August 1948 in Royan Pontaillac (Charente-Maritime), France. Attended school in Toulouse and Aurillac. Higher education in Rouen where he worked as editor and freelance photographer in the Paris-Normandy area. Briefly at the Viva agency. Joined the French Gamma in 1973 at the request of Raymond Depardon.
1975. He undertook two long works on subjects never before broached in France: the first "L’Hopital" was published in 1976; the second, “Les Incarcérés,” on French prisons was made in 1976 and published in 1983 with extracts from his personal journal written in the first person.
1977. He joined Magnum after he was noticed at the photography festival, Rencontres d’Arles, in 1976 by Marc Riboud and Bruno Barbey.
1984. He made his first film “La Boucane,” which was nominated for a Caesar in 1986 for best documentary. Other often award-winning films followed, all broadcast by French and European television. This same year, he started a cycle of winter voyages aboard so-called “classic” trawlers which continued until 1998 and led to the publication in 2001 of “Pleine Mer” (“Men at Sea”).
1986. First trip to Iran during the war with Iraq. Ongoing trips there until 1997.
1987. Made the film “Jean-Jacques,” spending two years chronicling the town of Octeville-sur-Mer, where he lived, through the eyes of Jean-Jacques mistakenly considered the “village idiot.”
1994. He made his third film “Marcel, prêtre” shot in Raulhac (Auvergne, Cantal) over a period of several years.
2001. Received the Prix Nadar.
2005. He has undertaken location scouting and shootings for the film “Sous-Marin” spending four months underwater aboard a nuclear attack submarine.
Since then, his numerous works on human confinement have been coupled with a more contemplative photographic approach. This how, in 2008, after his film aboard a nuclear submarine, he started photographic reconnaissance work that has already taken him from the arctic seas to the contaminated lands of Chernobyl (Ukraine 2008, 2009) and Fukushima (Japan, 2012)
Concurrently, for the same project, he started a series of mountain landscapes that will be published in the book "D’après Nature" (2010) and for which he will receive for the second time the Nadar Prize.
2008. Officially named “Peintre de la Marine”.
2010 and 2011. He re-embarks aboard the "Terrible," the latest French submarine SNLA dedicated to nuclear deterrence.
2013 He joined the international scientific team “BB Polar” with which he goes to Spitsbergen and Greenland (2013, 2014 and 2016)
2016 He was elected at the Academy of Fine Arts of the Institut de France.
He has been living in Fécamp, Haute Normandie (Upper Normandy, France) since 1995.