Bernard Plossu (Dalat, Vietnam, 1945) spent his childhood in Paris.
At the age of fourteen, thanks to his father, he discovered Africa and the Sahara where he took his first photos. He took an early interest in cinema and Nouvelle Vague in particular, a passion which still stays with him.
In 1965 he reunited with a part of his family in Mexico and started travelling, joining the beatnik movement, which was in full swing in those years. The experiences of that time contributed to the creation of his book Les voyages Mexicanes, in 1979. California first, then New Mexico, where his first son was born, were his home for many years, when he enjoyed the company of the most important American intellectuals, from Henry Miller to Robert Creeley and took frequent trips to Sub Saharan Africa.
His passion for the desert, which blossomed over those years, finds expression in the work “Le jardin de poussière”. His twenty years in North America gave us an outstanding photographic archive which confirmed Plossu as one of the great names of the Beat Generation and one of the main interpreter of the vast American landscapes.
The Georges Pompidou Centre, after consecrating him with a retrospective in 1998, involved him again in 2016 for a great exhibition dedicated to the Beat Generation, alongside Jack Kerouac e Allen Ginsberg; at the same time, the Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles included some of the photos of his American years in their exhibition “Western Colors”.
Plossu received the Grand prix National de la Photographie in 1998.
In the same year he moved to Andalusia with his wife Françoise Nuñez and two sons. Spain has always meant a lot to him and gave him great notoriety; in 1997 the IVAM of Valencia dedicated a retrospective to his work.
Bernard Plossu never stopped travelling to the Mediterranean and to the rest of the world. He published many books and his photographs have been exhibited in the most important festivals and institutions dedicated to photography and modern art. In 2016 he donated his entire collection of photos, created over the years through the exchanges with fellow photographers and friends, to the Maison Européenne de la Photographie of Paris.