Eric Bourret

France 1964


Eric Bourret
Eric Bourret
May 31, 2015

Eric Bourret is a French photographer, whose images evoke the passing of human time and steadiness of the landscape and nature.

Discovering the Great Himalayas

Eric Bourret was born in 1964 in Paris. At the age of 15 he discovered photography, during one astronomy class held in the Aveyron region of France. Eric was always a passionate walker – he used to take long hikes in the forests near his hometown, Paris. The discovery of photography helped him to express himself, and to gain different perspective on nature during his long walks. In 1984, he took his first hike through the region of Sainte Victoire and Sainte-Baume mountains.

Since this starting point, Bourret’s hikes included many trips, from the pre-Islamic sites in the Middle East to the Scottish coastline. Following each other, trips are always closely connected, sometimes lasting several weeks or even months. Eric walked across almost every part of his homeland, from the mountains in Provence to Roissy-en-France. The crucial and most important trip for Bourret was during 2002, when he discovered beautiful and cruel mountains of the Himalayas. From that moment on, he returns to the Himalayas regularly, every year.

photography, Eric Bourret, Cradle of Humankind
Eric Bourret – Cradle of Humankind #2 – 2009

Style of Eric Bourret’s Landscape Photography

Style of Eric Bourret’s photographs is influenced by English land artists and landscape photographers, such as Richard Long, Hamish Fulton, and some of the students from Bernd and Hilla Becher such as Axel Hütte. Describing himself as “photographer-walker”, Eric refuses to separate the two activities and brings them even closer.

I’m made up of the landscapes I traverse, and which also traverse me. I see photographic images as receptacles of form, energy and sense.

In Bourret’s photography, geological time overlaps with the human time, magnificent landscapes contrast with mankind and civilization. Images are measured by dates and places, distances and durations. The solitary walk through the vast, unmeasurable scenery allow Eric to have a whole new perspective on time and space. The discoveries of landscapes allow him to slowly construct his images, images that are created out of both movement and stillness of the photographer. The permanence of the stone and the silence of the mountains are almost visible.

photography, Eric Bourret, Timescape, landscape photography
Eric Bourret – Mercantour, France – Timescape series – 2010


Eric Bourret defines his images taken during hikes as “timescapes”. Parallel to landscapes, timescapes are captured with an intention to visualize the time spent in the spaces traversed. Through walking, the artist dialogues with the landscapes he perceives. To make this possible, Eric Bourret’s process of work is different and uncommon – for each image, he exposes the same negative either 6 or 9 times. By moving a certain distance between exposures, he multiplies and covers the initial image. Certain details and parts of the original shot disappear on the negative, creating the final outcome which becomes the overall sum of memories and experiences.

Galerie Esther Woerdehoff time print contact, Eric Bourret, photography, timescapes
Eric Bourret – Mercantour France 2011, detail

Eric Bourret at the Venice Biennale

The memories of Bourret’s walks are presented in several books that the artist published. The books are titled by the names of mountains he visited – Sainte-Victoire, Sainte-Baume, Alpilles, Lure and Hun-Tun. In 2015, Eric has also published a retrospective of his work since 2005.

Eric Bourret - exhibition view at the Palazzo Mora, Venice Biennale, 2015, photography
Eric Bourret – exhibition view at the Palazzo Mora, Venice Biennale, 2015


In 1994, Eric Bourret started exhibiting his images at the Photographic Museum in Helsinki and at the museum of Saint-Dié- des-Vosges. Since then, his photography has been featured in many group and solo exhibitions across France, but also South Africa, Portugal and Venezuela. His art is part of public and private collections and museums in Europe and in the US. In 2015, Bourret was a participant of the prestigious 56th Venice Biennale.

Eric Bourret lives between Marseille, France, and the Himalayas.

Featured image: Eric Bourret – portrait
All images copyright of the artist
All images used for illustrative purposes only

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group
201556th Biennale d'Art de VenisePalazzo Mora, ItalieGroup
2015Eric BourretMusée Ziem, MartiguesSolo
2015Eric BourretGalerie Esther Woerdehoff, ParisSolo
2015Eric BourretAbbaye de Montmajour, ArlesSolo
2015Eric BourretMusée de la Photographie A.Villers, MouginsSolo
2015Group ShowTamaulipas Museum of Contemporary Art, MexiqueGroup
2014Paris – PhotoGrand Palais, ParisGroup
2014Group ShowMusée d’Art, ToulonGroup
2014Quand la matière prend formeMusée Départemental, GapGroup
2014WhiteMusée Géo-Charles, Échirolles-GrenobleGroup
2014L’Origine du mondeGalerie J.Greset, Besançon - Espace Zéro, l’infini, ÉtuzGroup
2014L’esprit du lieuCentre d’Art le Moulin, la Valette-du-VarGroup
2014Mer & CielMusée d’Art, ToulonGroup
2013Le temps de la marche, Sainte-Victoire, Sainte-Baume, AlpillesArchives départementale, Aix-en-ProvenceSolo
2013TimescapeGalerie A.Lazarew, ParisSolo
2013Nous nous suivons de prèsFondation Vacances Bleues, MarseilleGroup
2013l’Atelierl’Atelier, EygalièreGroup
2013Géographie(s) Humaine(s)Centre d’Art de l’Yonne, Château de TanlayGroup
2013Et si ce n’était pas la mélancolieMusée Géo-Charles, ÉchirollesGroup
2013Le Temps de la marcheGalerie J.Greset, BesançonSolo
2012Excuse me, while, I kiss the skyCentre d’art Le Moulin, la Valette-du-VarSolo
2012Éric Bourret, PhotographiesGalerie DNR, L’Isle-sur-la-SorgueSolo
2012La Sainte-Victoire de loin en procheL’Aigalier, Salon-de-ProvenceGroup
2011ÉlévationsGalerie DNR, l’Isle-sur-la-SorgueSolo
2011Déambulations photographiques 3Espace Culturel, Le LavandouSolo
2011Regard sur la CollectionHôtel des Arts, ToulonGroup
2011L’Art Contemporain et la Côte d’Azur, un territoire pour l’expérimentation 1951-2011Théâtre de la Photographie et de l’Image, NiceGroup
2010What do we really know about landscape?Arts on Main, Johannesburg, South AfricaSolo
2010Écrire sur l’eauAbbaye de Reigny, VermentonSolo
2010LureMusée Prieuré de Salagon, ManeSolo
2010Éric BourretGalerie Au coin de la rue de l’Enfer, Saint-Étienne-les-OrguesSolo
2010Méditerranée 2Chapelle de l’Observance, DraguignanGroup
2009Tout ce qui est à voir est ce que vous voyezMusée départemental Arles Antique, RIPGroup
2009Quand la vie est un arbreMaison de la Nature des Quatre Frères, le BeaussetGroup
2008Hun-TunMusée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain, NiceSolo
2008Temps de pauseGalerie Annie Lagier, L’Isle-sur-la-SorgueGroup
2006Le Var et l’ailleursL’hôtel des Arts, ToulonSolo
2005Photographies 1995-2000Espace Culturel du LavandouSolo
2004Montagne au carréMusée Départemental, GapSolo
2004FotografíasGaleria, la Otra Banda, Merida, VenezuelaGroup
20041995-2000 - Égypte, Jordanie, Liban, Syrie, YémenMusée d’Archéologie, AntibesGroup
2004B.U 2002-2004Bibliothèque Universitaire, ToulonSolo
2003Eric BourretCentre Atlantique de la Photographie, BrestSolo
2003Eric BourretGalerie du Château d’Eau, ToulouseSolo
2003Eric BourretMusée d’Aquitaine, BordeauxSolo
2003Eric BourretGalerie Hédaes Sévira, ParisSolo
2002Eric BourretMuséo do Mosteiro de S. Martinho de Tibàes, PortugalSolo
2002Eric BourretCentre d’art Le Moulin, la Valette-du-VarSolo
2002Eric BourretMusée d’Art, AurillacSolo
2002Eric BourretEspace Culturel Bernard Dague, LouvresSolo
2002Eric BourretChâteau de l’Empéri, Salon-de-ProvenceSolo
2002Group ShowCloître Saint-Louis, AvignonGroup
2001Eric BourretEspace Peiresc, ToulonSolo
2001Eric BourretMusée Départemental, GapSolo
2001Eric BourretLes Ateliers de l’Image, Saint-Rémy-de-ProvenceSolo
2001Group ShowChâteau Borély, MarseilleGroup
2000Eric BourretMusée du Pavillon de Vendôme, Aix-en-ProvenceSolo
2000Eric BourretEspace d’Art les 4 mains, ManosqueSolo
2000Group ShowHellenic Center for Photography, Athens, GreeceGroup
1999Eric BourretCentre d’Art Informel de Recherche sur la Nature, Digne-les-BainsSolo
1999Eric BourretL’Amphithéâtre, RodezSolo
1999Group ShowChâteau de Servières, MarseilleGroup
1998Eric BourretCentre Culturel Français, Cairo, EgyptSolo
1998Eric BourretCentre de Coopération Linguistique de Sana’a, YemenSolo
1997Eric BourretMusée d’archéologie. NiceSolo
1997Eric BourretGalerie Municipale, Vitry-sur-SeineSolo
1997Group ShowMusée Matisse, NiceGroup
1996Eric BourretGalerie XIII, ArlesSolo
1996Group ShowBudapest Galleria, Budapest, HungaryGroup
1996Group ShowCentre San Fedele, Milan, ItalyGroup
1996Group ShowEl Centre d’Estudis i Recursos Culturals Pati Manning, Barcelona, SpainGroup
1996Group ShowEspace Saint Cyprien, ToulouseGroup
1995Eric BourretThe Photographic Museum, Helsinki, FinlandSolo
1995Eric BourretLe Parvis, Scène Nationale, Tarbes, FranceSolo
1995Eric BourretMusée de Saint-Dié-des-Vosges, FranceSolo
1995Eric BourretMuséo do Mosteiro de S. Martinho de Tibàes, PortugalSolo
1995Eric BourretÉglise de Barcarin, Salin-de-GiraudSolo
1994Eric BourretGalerie Suzel Berna, ParisSolo
1994Eric BourretMusée de la Photographie, MouginsSolo
1994Eric BourretGalerie du Hall du Livre, NancySolo
1994Group ShowChâteau Musée, Cagnes-sur-MerGroup
1993Eric BourretLa Maison des Comoni, le Revest-les-EauxSolo
1993Group ShowEspace Saint Cyprien, ToulouseGroup
1988-1992Eric BourretArtothèque, NiceSolo
1988-1992Eric BourretGallery Laterna Magica, Helsinki, FinlandSolo
1988-1992Eric BourretFort Napoléon, la Seyne-sur-MerSolo