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Most Beautiful Woman

about Jean-Francois Jonvelle

Jean-Francois Jonvelle vowed a lifelong fascination with women, his favorite subject. His freedom is for him to have never lost its freshness and time. Influenced by his family, the paintings of Francis Bacon, the movies of Fritz Lang and Ernst Lubitsch, his work is marked by a deep sensuality, great respect for his models, and a truth emerging from his naked portraits.

Born in the Provencal town of Cavaillon, France, in 1943, Jean-Francois began at the age of 20 years as an assistant of the famous American photographer Richard Avedon. After this important experience, he turned freelance and started working around women, admitting freely that his only subject was the women he loved. As he used to say, “When I photograph a woman, I want her to know that she is the most beautiful woman on earth, because a women who feels beautiful really is the most beautiful woman in the world.”

In 1981, three photographs support a campaign for the Avenir poster. This is a great scandal and success thanks to the teasing process used for the first time in France. The name of the photographer remains attached to the two slogans that accompanied his photographs: “Tomorrow I remove the top”, “Tomorrow I remove the bottom”. Jean-Francois died at the age of 58 of a fulminant cancer, 15 days after a tumor was detected, on January 16, 2002.

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