by Yan Morvan
Bataille de Leuctres 371 av.J.C. by Yan Morvan
Bataille d’Actium – 31 av.J.C. by Yan Morvan
Bataille d’Azincourt – 1415 by Yan Morvan
Fontenoy – 1745 by Yan Morvan
Austerlitz – 1815 by Yan Morvan
Verdun – 1916 by Yan Morvan
Auschwitz by Yan Morvan
Die « Wolfschanze » - 1941-1944 by Yan Morvan
Débarquement en Normandie – juin 1944 by Yan Morvan
Bataille de Berlin – mars 1945 by Yan Morvan
He has an incurable curiosity. That is how Yan Morvan, a 56 year old photojournalist, describes himself.
He talks to us about his battlefields.
“How and why does a person photograph war?”
I’ve asked myself this question throughout my twenty years as a war correspondent.
Is it the desire to inform, to participate in history, or to force destiny?
And then, how can one describe the indescribable – images of horror, followed by more images of horror. The transformation of our world into a spectacle, through television, the press, internet and news reports in real time, has worn down our reserve of empathy and our ability to be moved by the misfortune of others.
In 2004, using a Deardorff 20/25 camera, I began a series on battlefield locations. Do these fields still evoke history?
Putting emotions aside, I wanted to address the conscience, and demonstrating through otherwise innocuous landscapes, the « geography » of human madness.
I wanted to find a different « visual » way to bear witness and to reflect on the image and the reality of war.
I started photographing the battle fields of France, in Verdun, where I had found photos of my grandfather in his infantry uniform. And then, the other battlefields of Europe, this family of ours that has so often torn itself apart.
My project is an ambitious one, to show the lands on which men fought wars, to portray history, to « attempt » to reveal some measure of truth about mankind, and to contemplate the words of Heraclitus:
“War is the father and king of all: some he has made gods, and some men; some slaves and some free. War is common and justice is strife, all things come into being and pass away through strife. "
Over forty « battlefields » have already been photographed. »
Yan intends to cover another hundred battlefields. Later this year, he will be begin photographing those on the Pacific rim.
Text Yan Morvan