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Agence VU - Paolo Verzone
Paolo Verzone

Italian photographer, born in 1967, lives and works between Paris (France) and Barcelona (Spain).

As a student of literature and design, he realized his first assignments for the Italian press at the age of 18. If he covers the news in a world in perpetual turmoil, he nevertheless looks at it with the distance of those who prefer the time of observation to the urgency of the moment. He then immerses himself in long-term projects to propose series that question, in substance and in black and white, the current world.
Whether it be a series of portraits of Europeans at the beach (Seeuropeans 1994 - 2002), or of passers-by in the streets of Moscow (Moscow Project 1991 / 2001/ 2011), his first personal projects, carried out in collaboration with his partner Alessandro Albert, question the relationship between a shared social identity and the multiple individual singularities that make it up.

In the 2000s, he moved to Paris, joined the Agence VU', and switched from black and white to colour, from film to digital, all the while asserting his perfect mastery of light and compositional balance. In his portraits or documentary reportage, he photographs with rigour and eclecticism the way in which the individual composes with his social environment. With "Cadets" (2009-2013), he sets out to meet the officer cadets of the great military academies of Europe, bearers of both a tradition and a future, thus continuing his questioning of European identity.

From 2010-2015, the diversity of the stories he reports - from the Cannes Festival to the COP21, from Catalan demonstrations to the backstage of Matignon - leads him to explore more broadly the relationship of the individual to his own environment, on a social, cultural, historical and geographical level. He is particularly interested in scientists, whose mission is precisely to better understand what binds life to the world.
In 2015, he documented the lives of the climatologists at the Ny Alesund Arctic Research Station (Svalbard, Norway), scientists who came from all over the world to study the open-air laboratory that is the Arctic, and initiated a long-term project on this very special territory to which he regularly travels.
At the same time, he develops photographic stories of different types of researchers around the world and is notably assigned by National Geographic to documents archaeological missions (Bible Hunters in 2019; Reimagining Dinosaurs in 2020).

Winner of three World Press Photo awards, Paolo Verzone regularly collaborates with the French and international press (National Geographic, Time, The guardian, Der Spiegel, Mare, Geo, Le Monde, Libération, among others), with companies, foundations and institutions. Regularly exhibited, his photographs have been included in prestigious collections such as those of the Victoria & Albert Museum (London, Great Britain), the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (Paris, France), and the Instituto Nazionale della Grafica (Rome, Italy).

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Cannes Film Festival 2019 (2019)

During the two weeks long Cannes Film Festival, on assignment for Le Monde, Paolo Verzone made the portrait of the film personalities present on the Croisette: Antonio Banderas, Matti Diop, Emily Beecham and much more. Here is his portrait gallery of actress, film directors, jury members and award winners of the 72th Cannes Film Festival.

Permafrost, victim of global warming (2017)

In one of the northernmost corners of Russia lie the Lena river delta and its multiple islands. One of them is called Saymolov and harbours a scientific station dedicated to the study of permafrost. Every year for ten years, German and Russian scientists have been coming in the summer months to capture the consequences of climate change on the region’s biodiversity. A 2°C rise in temperature has been recorded and it triggered the thawing of some of the permafrost. Landslides and releases of viruses and glass-house effect gases have followed, participating in a phenomenon called “permafrost feedback”. The carbon dioxide and methane that enter the atmosphere after having been released from...

Catalonia is proclaiming its independence (2017)

Paolo Verzone has been following the civilian gatherings of both Catalan independence champions and detractors for the last two months in Barcelona. He has documented both camps demonstrations, the politics’ reactions and the vote itself. Now that the Catalan government has voted a constituent process to act its separation from the Spanish state, he has witnessed the scope of this event from a local standpoint.

Paris's Fashion Week (2016)

Lanvin, Balanciaga, Kenzo or Saint-Laurent, their Spring/Summer 2017 ready-to-wear collections were all there for Paris Fashion Week in September 2016. Paolo Verzone was on site for Liberation, to share the backstages and podiums of this event.

At the Headquarters of the WHO during the war against Ebola (2015)

Since the 14th of March 2014, date of the first email sent by the WHO teams in Guinea revealing the first suspected case of Ebola, the French doctor Pierre Fromenty and his teams work long hours to find solutions against this epidemic that hit Western Africa. Since WHO have decreed the state of urgency, four months after the first case, all the teams in charge of working on this meet up every morning in the basement of the main building, in the SOHC (Strategic Operational Headquarter Centre), in the crisis room of the WHO. 6000 kilometres way from the infected zones, researchers, doctors, and experts in sanitary aid find solutions like procedures of isolation, details of different rules of...

Karlberg Military Academy, Sweden (2013)

This series on the Karlberg Military Academy in Sweden is an extract from Paolo Verzone's long term project on European military academies. Between 2009 and 2013, Paolo Verzone has travelled throughout Europe to realize the portraits of cadets from the most important academies of the continent. Interested since for a long time in the quest of a European identity – particularly in his work "Seeuropeans" Paolo Verzone met these young officers who are a symbol of the link that exists between their school's traditions and their history, and the future these cadets hold for Europe's military system. In each of these academies, Paolo Verzone has chosen to shoot portraits in symbolic places...

Will and Kate Forever (2011)

On April 29, 2011, the British Royal Family was marrying Prince William, heir to the throne, making London the centre of attention of almost 2 billion viewers. Paolo Verzone was among the million of bystanders, elbowing his way to testify of both the festive atmosphere of that day and the preparations which were organized with a military discipline and were meant to display the symbolic force the British monarchy still possesses.

Chessboxing goes Russia (2009)

The Siberian Chess Boxing Organisation (SCBO) in cooperation with the World Chess Boxing Organisation (WCBO) proudly present: Chessboxing goes Russia – first tournament in Krasnoyarsk When Nikolay Sazhin won the world championship in the light heavyweight division in July 2008 it was obvious that Russia would play an im portant role in chessboxing. Sazhin returned with the belt and the vision to spread this sport in Siberia. As a consequence the SCBO was founded by the champion, Roman Lavrenov and Vladimir Makarov. The idea of chessboxing originates from the comic “froid equateur “(literally ‘cold equator’) by Enki Bilal. Chessboxing was initially conceived by the Dutch artist...

Iceland economic crisis (2008)

Paolo Verzone gives us a visual walk in an Iceland falling prey to an economical crisis which increase a crepuscular atmosphere of the insular North. First state to have to pay for the crash of the financial markets, Iceland had to face to his own bankrupt. The photographer crosses those dreary plains, hostiles and uninhabited. Each picture carries its own absence: we can see that human absence is a metaphor of the humanity’s absence of financial exchanges.

Ceasefire in Beirut

Lebanon, Beirut, 15th August 2006. first 3 days of ceasefire. Dahiyeh, Haret Hreik, Hezbollah stronghold in Beirut after 33 days of israeli bombing.



Paolo Verzone starts his story with panoramic views. Syrian desert landscapes are enduring the same treatment than the painted walls of the city. Then Verzone leaves the panoramic to come back to a more intimate and more precise photography.


In 2004, Paolo Verzone worked on the lebanese capitale, he dealed with life there and its inhabitants. 15 years after the civil war between christians and muslims in Lebanon, difficulties concerning Beirut are a reflect of the situation in the whole Near-East. Paolo Verzone manages to show a lighting city. Situated between Syria and the Mediterranean sea, the city is the place where roads and cultures meet. The place remains the souvenirs of fightings and also shows a sweet way of life.

Michel Platini, President of UEFA

Paolo Verzone followed Michel Platini wherever he went at the end of January. The UEFA president's schedule was at the time mainly filled by an official visit in Russia for the final of the Independent States Community and Baltic countries Cup in St Petersburg.


Cadets : au coeur des académies militaires

Un reportage exceptionnel au cœur des grandes académies militaires d’Europe.

Entre 2009 et 2013, le photographe Paolo Verzone a voyagé à travers l'Europe pour réaliser les portraits de cadets des plus grandes académies militaires du continent.
Intéressé depuis longtemps dans la quête d'une identité européenne, particulièrement présente dans son travail "Seeuropeans" (portraits d'européens sur les plages), Paolo Verzone a rencontré nombre de ces jeunes officiers qui sont le symbole d'un lien existant entre les traditions, l'histoire de leurs écoles, et le futur dont ils sont porteurs.
Dans chacune de ces académies, Paolo Verzone a réussi à les photographier dans des lieux symboliques, forts, qui vont bien au-delà de la simple identité nationale. Un portrait inédit sur l'élite des nations.
Text by: Catherine Sauvat

Publisher: Éditions de La Martinière (2014)
216 pages
Size: 28,5 x 23,5 cm   


Ce projet photographique a été entrepris dans toute l’Europe, il entend créer une grande galerie de portraits des Européens sur la plage.

A priori, toutes les plages se ressemblent, de même que se ressemblent tous ceux qui les fréquentent. Pourtant, les portraits issus de l'investigation des deux photographes soulignent les nombreuses différences qui peuvent exister entre les gens, sur les plages européennes, du nord au sud. Ce qui se dégage surtout de ces images, c'est combien, sur la plage, peuvent s'exprimer de manière surprenante les particularités de la société à laquelle on appartient. Or, dans le contexte actuel, il leur a paru primordial de mettre en valeur la multiplicité, l'individualité et les singularités de chacun, selon le pays dans lequel il évolue.
Photographies d'Albert & Verzone
Text by: Christian Caujolle

Publisher: Images Plurielles Editions (2012)
120 pages
Size: 22 x 22 cm  

Sorprendente Torino

Il libro “Sorprendente Torino” è un percorso fotografico attraverso una Torino inedita, sconosciuta, contemporanea ma incredibilmente reale; una Torino ricca di contraddizioni suggestive dalla dimensione umana inaspettata, una città a cui ci si affeziona e a cui la Maison Hermès è ormai visceralmente legata da dieci anni.
Text by: Giuseppe Culicchia

Publisher: SilvanaEditoriale (2007)

Volti di Passaggio

Siamo in una via di Mosca, subito dopo il colpo contro Gorbacev. Alcuni russi, scelti dal caso, sono invitati a posare davanti alla macchina fotografica a banco ottico di due giovani torinesi, Alessandro Albert e Paolo Verzone.
Marina Miraglia
Text by: Marina Miraglia

Publisher: Peliti (1992)
64 pages
Size: 21x24 cm
ISBN :8885121136   


    2015 - World Press Photo 2015 - Portraits, 3rd prize stories for ''Cadets''

    2011 - Sony World Photography Award, Fine Art Portraits

    2010 - PGB Photo Award - 2nd Prize of the Sport Picture f the Year

    2010 - American Photography 26 : selected

    2009 - World Press Photo - 3rd Prize stories Sports Features

    2009 - IPA International Photography Awards : Honorable mention Portrait, Personality

    2009 - American Photography 25 : selected

    2001 - Canon Giovani photography Award

    2000 - Foundation Studio Marangoni Award , Florence.

    2000 - "Attention Talent Photo" Award - Gallery Fnac Paris

    2000 - World Press Photo Award

    1992 - Kodak Award of European Panorama, Arles


Open Air Photography (Clervaux)
From 2020-09-25 to 2021-09-24

La cité de l\'image, Clervaux, Luxembourg has as its mission the organisation of exhibitions that focus on the photographic medium. Open Air Photography - Arctic Zero/ Chapter 1 - Open Air Exhibition As part of its 2020-2021 season on the theme of the \"North\", the Cité de l\'image in Clervaux is exhibiting, outdoors, Artic Zero, the first chapter of a long-running work by Paolo Verzone at Svalbard. An Arctic archipelago, attached to Norway but with the neutral status of a \"demilitarized zone\", Svalbard is today an important field of action for scientific research and hosts the...

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Cadets (Vichy)
From 2020-09-05 to 2019-10-25

Portrait(s) - Le rendez-vous photographique de Vichy Dans la continuité de son travail sur l’identité européenne, Paolo Verzone a, de 2009 à 2014, sillonné l’Europe afin de réaliser les portraits de jeunes officiers, cadets des plus grandes académies militaires du continent qui forment l’élite militaire de leur pays. Dans ces lieux porteurs d’une tradition de discipline et d’excellence, synonymes d’un futur assuré à ceux qui les intègrent, les poses de ces jeunes gens sont toutes empreintes de fierté et de la conscience de l’héritage qui pèse sur leurs épaules.

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Arctic Zero (Cortona)
From 2019-07-11 to 2019-09-29

Festival Cortona On The Move For the past few years Paolo Verzone has been documenting the inhabitants of one of the world’s norther-most communities, Ny-Ålesund. This place is also a center for international Arctic research and environmental monitoring where a number of countries run their own national research stations. Close-by Longyearbyen is the administrative center of Svalbard, and a tiny Norwegian metropolis, with a mining history, that hosts 2,100 residents from almost 50 different countries.

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Hope, a collaborative perspective (Arles)
From 2018-07-02 to 2018-09-23

As part of the photographic meetings in Arles, Paolo Verzone works with several photographers for the exhibition HOPE, a Collaborative Perspective which explores the formal possibilities of the image as document and the document as an agent of knowledge and understanding of contemporary issues. HOPE presents photography as an experience, a sharing. It presents the work of people who have chosen to create images, sometimes in parallel with their professions, to influence their lives and environment. Photographers are not merely witnesses, but become actors, using all the means available to...

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Toilers of the sea (Deauville)
From 2016-10-20 to 2016-11-27

For his series realized as part of the Planche(s) Contact Festival, Paolo Verzone walked around Deauville, looking for what he called \"the toilers of the sea\". An overview of individual and group portraits to reveal the diversity of professions related to the sea and the beach of Deauville. From the fisherman to the iceman, from the harbor captain to the beach umbrella renter...

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Patrimoines Revisités (Reims)
From 2016-09-17 to 2016-12-31

Newly listed as UNESCO Wolrd Heritage, the city of Reims gave a carte blanche to five international photographers including Paolo Verzone. He made portraits in situ of figures whose existence and activity are involved in various ways in heritage destiny. Vernissage and opening on the occasion of Heritage Days on Friday, September the 16th.

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Les Cadets (Blois)
From 2015-10-08 to 2015-10-11

Between 2009 and 2013, the photographer Paolo Verzone has traveled across Europe to realize portraits Cadet of largest military academies of continent. He opens the door of prestigious sites which have created over the centuries a real mythology of excellence, with its figures and its legends.

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Cadets (Rome)
From 2015-06-04 to 2015-07-02

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Cadets (Paris)
From 2014-12-01 to 2015-01-22

Between 2009 and 2013, the Italian photographer Paolo Verzone travelled through Europe to make the portrait of cadets of the continent’s biggest military academies. He opens the door on these prestigious places that built over time a real legend of excellency with its stories and its figures.

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Cadets (Sanary-sur-Mer)
From 2014-05-22 to 2014-06-15

Photomed 2014, from 22nd of May to 15th June 2014, in Sanary-sur-Mer (South of France). Paolo Verzone features his work \"Cadets\". Paolo Verzone travelled all over Europe to take portraits of young officer cadets from the largest military academies of the «old continent», who form the military elite of their countries and who have agreed – an exceptional feat – to open their doors to the photographer. In most of these academies tradition and discipline prevail, as do aristocracy and in some rare cases a laid-back attitude. In each of these institutions, Paolo Verzone takes a wicked...

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From 0000-00-00 to 0000-00-00

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 Biographie de Paolo Verzone

Prix et bourses

2000 Premio per un progetto Fotografico
2000 Attention Talent Photo 2000, Fnac Gallery, Paris - France
2001 World Press Photo
2001 Best Portfolio of the Canon Giovani Fotografi


2008 European Works, Cité de l'Architecture, group exhibition – Paris and Brussels
2007 Sorprende Torino, exhibition on the Piazza Castello, Turin - Italy
2005 Paris Photo, VU' Gallery, Paris - France
2004 Exposition Fotografia Festival Internazionale of Rome - Italy


Danseurs Balinais, Géo Italie
Rebbeca Gomperts, Della Repubblica
Viktor&Rolf, Amica
Portaits à la Commission Européenne, Amica
Michel Platini, Le Monde 2
Michel Platini, Le Temps


2008 European Works, group publication, Filigranes Editions 2007 Sorprendente Torino, Silvana Editoriale
2005 Quotodiano al Femminile, Ed. Lines


Alenia Spazio
Boston Consulting Group
Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie de Paris La Vilette
Coca Cola
Commission Européenne
Conseil Régional d’Île de France
CNP Assurances
Deutsche Bank
Max Havelaar
Proskaeur Rose
Telecom Italia

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