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Mouvement du 22 Mars

Movement of 22 March

French student movement

1968. március 22.

"I’ve known Gérard since we met in the early 1970s. He was working then as a professional photographer (CP 27 867), publishing in Jean Edern-Hallier’s newspaper L’Idiot International and in Jean-Jacques Brochier’s Magazine Littéraire. With two Leicas hanging around his neck, wearing a Humphrey Bogart-style trench coat, and driving a sports car (a blue Alpine Renault Tour de France), he cut a sharp, impressive figure in the eyes of a young journalist like me." - Michel Puech


The Leica MP black paint “Gérard Bois” (est. €160,000-€200,000) also had historic moments. The camera (below) delivered to New York in 1957, a rare black painted Summicron f2/5cm lens no.1468967, belonged to the French photojournalist Gérard Bois. He became known as Gérard Aimé, and is noted for his photos of the civil unrest in Paris in May 1968. Leitz made only 141 MPs in black paint, which were sold primarily to professional photographers, making the camera a rare collector’s item. At some point the owner chose to remove the worn black paint.


The Mouvement du 22 Mars (Movement of 22 March) was a French student movement at the University of Nanterre founded on 22 March 1968, which carried out a prolonged occupation of the university's administration building. Among its principal leaders was Daniel Cohn-Bendit. After occupying the building, the school dean called the police, and a public scuffle ensued that garnered the movement media and intellectual attention. This event was one of a series of clashes that led to the nationwide protests in May 1968 in France.

The events of 22 March became the subject of Robert Merle's 1970 novel Derrière la vitre (published in the US in 1972 as Behind the Glass).

Wikipedia, last updated 2023.03.19.

During the movement Gérard-Aimé, the photographer who witnessed the first sparks of those events, was the only photographer to have captured May 22, 1968, which established Daniel Cohn-Bendit as the student leader. He knew him and had been friends with him since 1965.

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