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Ulysse Nardin - Ben Thouard, new partner

Ulysse Nardin Ben Thouard, new partner

Hunter of moving water, light, transparency and poetry, the French photographer joins Ulysse Nardin's family of explorers composed of Fred Buyle, Sébastien Destremau, Romain Pilliard, Dan Lenard, Mathieu Crépel and Alex Caizergues.

This spring, Ben Thouard joins Ulysse Nardin's Armada of explorers alongside freediver and photographer Fred Buyle, sailors Sébastien Destremau, Romain Pilliard and Dan Lenard, snowboarder and surfer Mathieu Crépel and kitesurfing champion Alex Caizergues. Like the hero of Homer's Odyssey, these modern-day Ulysses set out to conquer their dreams and ambitions, ready to face obstacles and the unknown, connected more than ever to the elements, the ocean and nature.

Ben Thouard, new partner

© Ben Thouard

Ben Thouard grew up in Toulon, in the south of France, near Marseille. Not known for its waves, it was still enough to give him the "surfing bug" at just eight years old. Around the age of fifteen, he found an old film camera in the attic of his family’s home. Curious, he bought himself a few rolls of film and quickly discovered a second passion: photography.

Ben Thouard, new partner

© Ben Thouard

Having begun as a surf photographer, Ben Thouard quickly decided to move towards what he calls "artistic” photography. He came to seek the timelessness of nature by caressing the surface of the water with his lens. Under water or on it, his photos uproot every point of reference in a play of light that does away with the notion of gravity and time. Above, below or on the wave is of no importance. What counts is the texture, depth and sparkling beauty of nature and the elements.

Ben Thouard, new partner

Diver Great White 44 mm © Ulysse Nardin

In love with the ocean and armed with his photo equipment and his Diver Great White 44 mm, he chases waves, their strength and their clarity in a quest to capture their beauty and emotion. He takes to the water at carefully calculated moments, in which nothing is left to chance. His shots sometimes require more than a full day of work spent in the water measuring the sun's rays with almost surgical precision to capture mere seconds. Months of work for a single photo, a single wave. An instant.

Ben Thouard, new partner

Diver Great White 44 mm © Ulysse Nardin

Ben Thouard currently lives in Tahiti, which he especially loves for its clear, turquoise waters. His photos, bathed in shades of blue, gray and white, are deeply moving. Aesthetic, timeless and “never-before seen”, they have brought him international renown and several prestigious awards. With over two million breathtaking photographs of water in motion, the photographer has just published his first art book, Surface.

Ben Thouard, new partner

© Ben Thouard

Even today, when photography is less likely to awe than at the dawn of its invention, there is something absolutely magnetic in Ben Thouard’s work, which clearly differentiates art photography from photography. In the former, which produces images and emotions, the challenge is to take visible reality and extract what it does not seem able to give. A magnificent work of graphic composition, as well as emotion, carried out by Ben Thouard and encouraged by the Ulysse Nardin teams.

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