Opened in 2011 by the people at Magnum Photo Agency (their Paris bureau is a few streets away), Le Bal is an institutional exhibition space dedicated to the documentary image. For the most part that means lots of photography exhibits but they like to mix up the shows with videos and especially books. They hold conferences with a great line-up of guest speakers and screen documentaries and other films at the nearby Cinéma de Cinéastes. Be sure to check out the bookshop where you can browse through their connoisseur’s collection of high-end photo books and limited edition zines. Le Bal Café is a great place to meet friends for a quick drink or sit down and taste Anna and Alice’s Anglo-French cuisine. And if you’re wondering why it’s called Le Bal, the space was once a dance hall cum brothel in the roaring ‘20s.
Address
Le Bal, 6 Impasse de la Défense, 75018, Paris, France
Current city: Paris
Neil Atherton is a Paris-based photographer and curator from the UK. He has called Paris home for over a decade and still speaks French with an English accent. His personal photography is based almost uniquely on the use of out-of-date film and explores the physical effects of time on memory. He has a large camera collection of ‘70s rangefinders and compacts from the ‘80s and organizes the biannual photography festival Mois de a Photo-OFF.
 

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