In Arles, photos of a German in Provence

In Arles, photos of a German in Provence
In Arles, photos of a German in Provence

“Our sun is dead,” the parent association said two weeks ago. Founder of Jazz sous les étoiles alongside his wife Josette, Henri Bonifay died two weeks ago. A passionate man whose glow will carry the 6e edition of her baby which launches Monday 1is July at the Château de Bouc-Bel-Air. A building dating from the 8th centurye century where the spirit and notes inspired by the sacred monster of the clarinet and the saxophone, Sidney Bechet (1897-1959), among other composers, will float When the sun sets down South. Son « best disciple », in the person of saxophonist Olivier Franc, will come to celebrate with his quintet « Creole heritage » from the New Orleans musician.

From Gypsy to Celtic

The next day, in these same places, it will be up to the explorers of gypsy jazz, Basilic swing, to show another side of the blue note, before the festival stops off on Wednesday at the Hot brass jazz club in Aix-en-Provence in the company of American singer Angie Wells. From July 4, Jazz sous les étoiles will be back under the skies of Bouc-Bel-Air, in the Albertas gardens. This sumptuous park will first see the Caveau de la Huchette quintet flourish, led by the essential vibraphonist and drummer Dany Doriz, then the Celtic rock group The Celtic social club. Friday evening, it will be the turn of the Thomas Dutronc – Stochelo Rosenberg – Rocky Gresset trio. The festival will continue and end on July 6 with singer China Moses and saxophonist Candy Dufler.

P.A.

But what a good wind could have blown in the sails of a photographer native of Baden-Württemberg, near the Black Forest, towards the dry regions of Provence at the end of the 1950s so that he then captured scenes of boules ? After having traveled across Europe and notably produced a report in the Camargue, edited and accompanied by a text by Jean Giono, Hans Silvester decided “ to buy a ruin near Gordes in 1959. In the hamlet where it was located, children were playing bowls. Very quickly, I realized that there were fields and competitions everywhere : Apt, Roussillon… », recalls this octogenarian still living in the Luberon. His photos give rise to Aim Right: pétanque and Provençal game through the lens of Hans Silvester. An exhibition visible from Monday 1is July to Sunday September 29 at the Muséon Arlaten, as part of the Rencontres d’Arles (see box opposite). I had found a little system : I took photos of the bowlers in the afternoon before developing the films in the evening. And the next day, I gave it to them. They even offered me pastis “, still jokes today the man whose lens was focused on both pétanque and long-distance players until the 1980s.

“Balls are theater and sport”

« In every village, every competition, there is always at least one star. Boules is both theater and sport “, the German photographer still observes with delight. His photos, taken in Provençal villages as well as in Marseille, cover the walls of the chapel of the Museon Arlaten, among objects and testimonies illustrating “ ethnological survey-collection work among current pétanque and Provençal game players ”, but also its history. Work also carried out by the teams from the Arlesian museum. A papet who plunges into the garrigue, another who throws the ball supported by a cane, a woman who has a dog and does not hesitate to snatch a point under the insistent and concentrated gaze of a crowd of Marseille bowlers, lengthists who rush like phoenixes to smash the scrap metal… around sixty modern silver prints literally represent an art of living, as the eyes of players and spectators alike seem obsessed by the cork. “ Pétanque is a mixture of happiness and tradition “, says Hans Silvester. Often, it also creates enormous tension when an important point is at stake. It is a very serious game, even among children. Sending balls with this elegance towards the goal is always difficult “, says the German-Provençal photojournalist.

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