FLORENCE, JUNE 13 2002: SpazioFoto Credito Artigiano, the gallery located in Via De Boni 1, in Florence, is opening a photo exhibition called 'The East in a mirror', which presents a collection of photographs by French press photographers Roland and Sabrina Michaud. The event is focusing on the Islamic civilization by portraying oriental miniatures and Moslems' faces.
Florence's SpazioFoto is a photo gallery promoted by the Credito Artigiano Group with the aim of enhancing the value of photography. The exhibition that SpazioFoto is soon hosting in its stands in Florence was first hosted at the Fnac Gallery in Paris, in 1982. 'The East in a mirror' has been inspired by a series of journeys to Middle East the French married couple has been going on over a period of 14 years.
It was first presented in 1982, as 'L'orient dans un miroir'. Born in Clermont-Ferran, France, Roland Michaud graduated in English literature. From 1956 to 1958, he worked with Radio Morocco as translator of the English-speaking broadcasts and as French professor with the American Embassy in Rabat.
Then, he met Sabrina. They got married and moved to Paris. Since 1960, they have been working hard as press photographers in eastern countries. They went on several journeys in Africa and Asia, taking hundreds of photographs and making photo reportages, some of which were published in important magazines both in France and abroad (e.g. Paris-Match, Réalités, Connaissance des Voyages, Courrier de l'UNESCO Francia, Life & Venture USA).
The photo reportage on a journey that they had taken during winter to Afghan Turkistan together with their little son, who was just four years' old, was published along with their first article in National Geographic Magazine in 1972. Another one called Turkomani was published in the same magazine in November 1973.
By putting oriental miniatures close to the photographs that they had been taking during their journeys, Roland and Sabrina Michaud focus on an everlasting civilization. Images and symbols of the Islam portrayed by Roland and Sabrina convey the idea of eternal youth.
Photographs of people and landscapes, a stone bow, horses, tools, costumes or just a flower carried on the fingertip, the falconer or carding roller, hunter and knight, a little girl and a warrior portray the beauty of a colourful world that never goes down to mere pageantry.
Roland and Sabrina wanted to discover human beings that they show us through traditional miniatures.
Among the most important books by Roland and Sabrina Michaud are: 1969/70 Primi libri apparsi su Afghanistan (published by Hachette-Réalités) and Spedizione Caméléon (published by SNEP, about 180,000 copies sold). Arte dell'Islam, text by Titus Burckhardt; Scienze islamiche, text by S.H. Nasr, published by World of Islam Publishing Company. 1977 "Caravanes de Tartarie", published by Chêne, Paris. 1980 "Mémoire de l'Afghanistan" and 1981 "Corée de Jade", published by Chêne, Paris. 1983 "La Route d'Or de Samarkand" published by Chêne, Paris. 1984 "L'Art de l'Islam" published by Sindbad, Paris. 1990 "L'Art de, l'Islam", published by Sindbad, Paris. 1996 "Faïence d'Azur", published by the Imprimerie Nationale, Inghilterra.2000 "la Grande Muraille de Chine" published by the Imprimerie Nationale. 2002 "L'Agfhanistan" published by Martinière. 2002 "Le voyage des Indes", published by the Imprimerie Nationale.