Paris transsexuals in the 60s: photos by Christer Strömholm

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Jacky, place Blanche, 1961.
From the photobook “Les Amies de Place Blanche” © Christer Strömholm

Originally published in 1983, Les Amies de Place Blanche focuses on the transsexual community living around the Place Blanche district of Paris in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The book established Christer Strömholm’s reputation as one of the leading European photographers of the twentieth century.
The exquisite new version of the book includes the original essays by Strömholm and publisher Johan Ehrenberg as well as newly commissioned texts by Jacky and Nana, two of the women who feature in many photographs in the book. The introduction is by Hélène Hazera, a leading French journalist, actress, director, and television producer who is also a transsexual.
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Gina & Nana, place Blanche, 1963.
From the photobook “Les Amies de Place Blanche” © Christer Strömholm

See a high-resolution slideshow of these and more images, and read the book review with very touching and sensitive quotes from Strömholm, in the latest issue of Lens Culture.

Christer Strömholm’s work from this series is featured in an exhibition at International Center for Photography in New York City from May 18 – September 2, 2012.

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Left: Soraya & Sonia, Hôtel Pierrots, 1962. Right: Cynthia, Hôtel Idéal, 1966.
From the photobook “Les Amies de Place Blanche” © Christer Strömholm

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