Bart Koetsier’s best photograph: a sleeping man slumped in a chair on a Paris street

By Interview by Sarah Moroz

‘I know it's ugly and awkward – but I will steal a photograph if I really need to have it'

Before I moved to Paris, I lived in Amsterdam for almost 20 years. It's small, quiet and clean – almost everything that opposes good photography, in my opinion. I always ended up shooting in the red-light district, hoping for something crazy and unexpected to happen. I started to feel like a goldfish, circling round and round, bored.

I was intrigued by the prostitution in Paris – especially having come from Amsterdam, where it is organised and sex workers are protected. Around the corner from my new place, on a boulevard in the 18th arrondissement, there are groups of eastern European women selling their services. On my way to photograph there one night, I passed by this guy slumped in a chair in the street. I recognised him – I had seen him peeing against a tree.

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Source: Bart Koetsier’s best photograph: a sleeping man slumped in a chair on a Paris street