Photography in France
The Ministry of Culture brings together several entities responsible for the preservation and dissemination of photography.
France saw the birth of photography in the mid-19th century. This technique has revolutionized the creation and distribution of images and it itself has undergone very profound revolutions, the latest one, with the advent of digital technology not being the least important. Thus amateur practices, initially reserved for an elite, are now widespread: photography has become a common instrument of communication, which transcends linguistic barriers or even prohibitions.
Within the Ministry of Culture, the Department of Photography is placed within the Directorate General of Artistic Creation and its field of competence includes photography in all its components.
France, the country of the invention of photography, supports this discipline with voluntarism by funding a set of institutions that ensure its conservation and dissemination (BnF, Centre Pompidou, Musée d'Orsay, Cnap, Jeu de Paume) and the network of art centres that allow a presence throughout the territory. This geography makes France an exemplary and unique country for accompanying visual arts. The Ministry of Culture also contributes to support photographic creation through a major acquisition policy (CNAP and FRAC) and the accompaniment of major events such as Paris photo, the Rencontres d'Arles and Visa pour l'image.