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She is considered one of the great and exceptional photographers of our times. Known as both a sensitive observer on her many trips around the world, and as a chronicler of her adopted home town of Vienna, she has put together an incomparable and diverse body of work.

The exhibition at the Theatre Museum in Vienna, which she is currently fully involved in preparing, will offer insight into her work as a theatre photographer. Her familiarity with Vienna's rooftop landscapes is equally evident in the photo book titled Über die Welt und den Zeiten, which was published last year. Free from any feelings of vertigo, she carefully explored the rooftops of Vienna's Ringstrasse architecture, highlighting the many figures on the monumental architecture with new perspectives and in previously unnoticed relationships. De Grancy’s interest in others – whether made of stone, marble or encounters of flesh and blood - awakened her fascination with photography and ultimately led to her becoming a photographer. This curiosity, and the desire to better understand communications with other spheres, have defined her work. Initially trained as a graphic designer, she explains that “photography grew within me and then became a determining factor in my life.”
During her extensive travels, photography opened up new perspectives for De Grancy. “In fact, we are travelling our whole lives. We are constantly crossing over our own boundaries, towards the boundaries of others. The dignity of human beings is inviolable. We must acknowledge how partial our judgements are,” the photographer says. “Consequently, reportage work should always be responsible work, aimed at building bridges. All the travelling made me aware of how incredibly diverse and precious our world is; and how the powerful are destroying this planet, with their narrow-minded interests, blind greed, and the monotonisation of society.” Such a realisation must be particularly painful for the photographer, especially in light of current events. During her journeys, she always took time to acknowledge the truth concerning the living conditions and everyday stories of her fellows. “As a normal press photographer, I couldn't act. I wanted to capture more – not just an image.”

The viewer may well appreciate her unmistakable eye, the stories she tells in her photographs, and her inimitable ability to create relationships and to build emotional bridges. We thank her, and warmly congratulate Christine de Grancy today, on the occasion of her birthday!

Born in Brünn (today Brno in the Czech Republic) on May 18, 1942, Christine de Grancy studied Ceramics, Pottery and Commercial Graphics at the School of Applied Arts. She has been living in Vienna since 1963, where she worked in advertising agencies as a graphic designer and art director. In 1977, following a stay of several months in Patmos, she began to dedicate herself to photography. Her travels have taken her to Greece, Japan, Portugal, Algeria, China, Tibet, Pakistan, Turkey, Georgia, Russia, Niger and Mali, among other places. De Grancy prefers to work in black and white – primarily with a Leica M6 and Leica R7, and today a digital Leica M10.
(Ulrich Rüter)

Christine de Grancy's work is presented in a comprehensive portfolio in LFI issue 4/2022.

The exhibition, Christine de Grancy: Sturm und Spiel at the Theatre Museum in Vienna, will be on display from June 3 to November 7, 2022.

The photo book Über der Welt und den Zeiten was published in Vienna last year by Die2.

The photographer, retouching a large-format exhibition print, in 2014 (Mother and Daughter, Republic of Niger, 2000) © Gabriela Brandenstein
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