Françoise Huguier’s series “Secrètes” was created in 1996 in Burkina Faso and Mali, countries she knows very well and where she has often traveled. For this series, the photographer took the time to meet people: she talked to them, entered their homes, the women’s rooms that hold all their secrets, and listened to them. Thus, she earned the right to photograph their lives, and brought back a series of portraits captured in intimacy, simplicity and shared respect. It is the glances that captivate you: close, intense glances, glances of women gathered on the threshold, in the refuge of a room, in the abandonment of a corner of the bed. Each photograph betrays complicity.
This exhibition parallels Françoise Huguier’s “Secret” series with her own collection of prints by the great African photographers Seydou Keita and Malick Sidibé. This long-standing friendship is highlighted here for the first time. Françoise Huguier has forged sincere relationships with her models, women she met in Burkina Faso and Mali, as well as with local photographers. Through her intimate portraits of women, she reveals them to the public, just as she brought immense talents such as Seydou Keita and Malick Sidibé out of the shadows by creating the Bamako Biennial of Photography in 1994, which will make these two great artists part of the history of photography.