Madeleine de Sinéty, a forgotten photographer
God is Truth Hotel © Madeleine de Sinéty
Portland Main Mother © Madeleine de Sinéty
Marie Christine and her Hen © Madeleine de Sinéty
Stone Cutter and his Rabbit © Madeleine de Sinéty
The Postman © Madeleine de Sinéty
Four Loaves © Madeleine de Sinéty
William Wegman at Work © Madeleine de Sinéty
Lunch Under The Apple Trees © Madeleine de Sinéty
Boy With Dog © Madeleine de Sinéty
Mère Bourg © Madeleine de Sinéty
Launch at The Saulniers © Madeleine de Sinéty
Mère Fine and her Cow © Madeleine de Sinéty
Madeleine de Sinéty passed away on December 22, 2011, in Rangely (Maine) from breast cancer, which she had battled with over the last 20 years of her life. One look at the photographs of Madeleine de Sinéty will most definitely make you wonder why she is not more widely known outside the state of Maine.
Madeleine de Sinéty specialized in making the everyday, the ordinary, the mundane worthy of a beautiful portrait. Madeleine’s favorite subjects were people who lived simple lives, close to the earth, with no interaction with the industrial world.
Madeleine was born in 1934 ,the family moved between the Château Valmer in the Loire valley, and Algeria. She had a very protected childhood. In the 1970's and through to the 1990’s Madeleine intimately documented the daily life and events of Poilley, a small village in Brittany. Her portraits display a connection to the villagers as if she had been a life long resident herself. Madeleine returned in 2001 to photograph and found a different, more modern village. In the early 1980’s, Madeleine married an American journalist, Daniel Behrman and moved to Rangeley, Maine. Daniel Behrman died in 1990. Madeleine and Daniel had two sons, one of which still lives in Paris and Rangeley.
While living in Maine, Madeline was invited to photograph a small village in Uganda that had neither electricity nor running water. In Chesterville, Maine Madeleine quietly documented the life of a single timber logger who used only draft horses to remove the trees he felled.
Cecily Mariece Caceu
Portland Museum of Art
Seven Congress Square
Portland, Maine 04101