This next Photography on a Postcard Artist is a tour de force, balancing a career as a commercial photographer for companies such as Mango and Bayard presse with a career as a documentary travel photographer. In both fields Didier Bizet has shown a dedication to his craft with a defined personal aesthetic emerging in both.
As a documentation photographer Didier has travelled across the globe including places such as North Korea, Russia and Kazakhstan. In his series People is my God. Didier explores the bizarrely staged and 'Truman-show' like atmosphere of North Korea, where the tourism industry is moulded and shaped to create a facade over a desperate country with declining resources and a strict authoritarian political regime. However, his photos are not bleak and heavily satirical in ways that often this kind of documentation can be. Rather there is a sense of Didier aiming to search for the heart of the people of North Korea. An exploration of the every day lives of the people who are a part of this globally condemned country.
It has been said that greatest artists see their work as incomplete, stepping stones to be built upon and lead to the next project. In Pyongyang Paris, inspired by his Truman Show-like trip, Didier Bizet decided to take a North Korean tourist on a similar journey around France. Bizet merges recognisable scenes from North Korea with shots showing one of its residents discovering Paris in the same regimented and militant manner. He is seen at various landmarks across the French capital (the Eiffel Tower and Louis Vuitton store) experiencing a less-than-honest depiction of Paris – similar to Bizet's Pyongyang experience. The aim is to compare the two worlds side-by-side with strangely common visuals which obscure the cosmic differences that are between the two cities. "I want to denounce the stupidity of [North Korea], the crazy stupidity of this big cinema movie where millions of people are playing a role," Bizet explains.
We feel very lucky to have one of Didier's Pyongyang Paris images as one of the Photo Postcard pieces we will be exhibiting in October.