Lucien Hervé: When do we cast off for happiness?

Lucien Hervé Unité d'Habitation, Nantes-Rezé, France, Le Corbusier architect, 1954Showcasing the work of one of the world’s leading figures and master of architectural photography, Lismore Regional Gallery presents Lucien Hervé: When do we cast off for happiness? on display until 3 December 2016.

Lucien Hervé’s characteristic style combines a humanist outlook with an architect’s eye. His use of cropped frame (he often uses a pair of scissors), plunging or oblique view, focusing both on the detail and the big picture, and uncluttered composition tending toward abstraction, create a unique style that is instantly recognizable.

The images presented in this exhibition provide a view on Hervé’s personal take on three major creative personalities of the 20th century: Le Corbusier, father of modern architecture, Niemeyer, sculptor of monuments, and Matisse working on his last masterpiece, the Chapelle de Vence.

Award-winning documentary Lucien Hervé: Photographer Despite Himself – directed, produced and written by Gerrit Messiaen (Atom Film) will screen throughout the exhibition, providing a deep insight into the life and work of Lucien Hervé.

Born in 1910, in Hungary, László Elkán arrives in Paris in 1929. He is instantly taken by the Parisian art and music circles, and starts taking press and fashion photographs by the end of the 1930s. As a communist militant, he joins as early as 1941 the Resistance ranks under the name of Lucien Hervé.

Closely associated with the post-war Humanist school, his career takes a fateful turn in 1949 when Pere Couturier, a friend of Matisse, introduces him to Le Corbusier. Upon seeing his work, the latter declared: ‘You have the eye of an architect.’ He becomes his designated photographer until Le Corbusier’s death in 1965.

His collaborations also include Alvar Alto and Oscar Niemeyer. His images of the Abbaye du Thoronet in France and of the Escorial in Spain are also renowned. His work has been shown in major galleries and museums across the world. Hervé died in Paris in 2007.

Lucien Hervé: When do we cast off for happiness?
Lismore Regional Gallery, 131 Molesworth Street, Lismore
Exhibition continues to 3 December 2016
Free admission

For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Lucien Hervé, Unité d’Habitation, Nantes-Rezé, France, Le Corbusier architect, 1954 – reproduced with kind permission © Estate of Lucien Hervé