Finalist Photographers
Estée Lauder Pink Ribbon Photo Award 2021



The 40 finalist photographs and their stories, selected by the Jury for the tenth edition of the Estée Lauder Pink Ribbon Photo Award.

Many thanks to those who participated with their talent and heart in this 8th edition, whether they are lfinalists or not.

We want yo thank also our partners and the Jury members who have accompanied us again this year with great generosity.

The votes for the Teva Audience Award were open from September 10 to 24 2021


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From October 28th to 30tht, our partner Polka magazine will publish on its Instagram account its selection of fifteen photos among our 2021 finalists.

Instagram Polka magazine

The three Jury Prizes as well as the Teva Audience Award will be announced during Paris Photo Fair 2021.

(he texts are currently under translation. The page will be updated soon.

Jacques COHEN (37)

Jacques COHEN (37)

“Being alone to face this tsunami, my stomach and my head in turmoil? No way!
I found the strength to get up after the announcement, to endure the treatments thanks to the delightful people full of heart who supported me and still support me, because the recurrence lurks, threatens. I doubt, I anguish. My chest swells, my heart beats for them. I fly; I am light, carried by the love and strength they give me to move beyond the disease and suffering."

I wanted this flight, like a liberation, another you, another Céline, who crossed this tunnel, courageous and willing. A ‘thank you’ with open arms, looking up to the sky as if to embrace everyone without distinction, eyes covered, misty, full of gratitude! Being behind the lens to transmit the energy of a new impulse of life.
Marianne LOUGE (26)

Marianne LOUGE (26)

“Not all storms come to ruin your life, some come to clear your path. My cancer, my best enemy.”
This image was made during a “Revelation” session whose goal is to help people reclaim their self-image through photography and a proposed experience, after an illness or other significant event.
This session and particularly this image were took place in conditions of trust, plenitude, serenity, and gratitude. Anouk, my model, shone through my lens, and exuded an indescribable beauty. The black-and-white color scheme reinforces all these emotions and provides an even more artistic result.
Audrey DA CUNHA (35)

Audrey DA CUNHA (35)

“To welcome with indulgence and kindness the reflection of this now-asymmetrical body.
To tame fear, to accept sadness, to let yourself be intensely loved.
To go to meet yourself, to seek resources in the depths of your being.
And decide to smile at life, so precious. To savor each moment, to be moved by all the beautiful things that this ordeal reveals.
To take care of this damaged body, this fighting body, to be proud of it, to find it beautiful in its difference and its resistance.
And to offer it beautiful photos to celebrate and thank it.
This picture, so difficult to look at a few months ago, today overwhelms me. My eyes no longer suffer with the brutality of my scar, the absence; they are moved by the beautiful smile and this joy of living, intact.
I feel a deep gratitude for this life force that inhabits me and for all the love that nourishes it. This smile is me! This woman is me!”
— Céline
Marie-Louise SOLER (26)

Marie-Louise SOLER (26)

“Marie-Lou and I were brought together by the laws of the universe. Driven by the same determination and touched in our hearts by this ordeal, synchronicities put us both on this path.
Faced with the incomprehension of the announcement of the disease and the silence of the why, I drew my strength from meditation and spirituality.
Like a mountain facing the swirling winds and the burning sun, I remained anchored to this Earth that carried me and unfolded its teachings around me. Mother Nature gave me the energy of wisdom.
Leaving behind the dark clouds of treatments, today I welcome the pure light of life. I reveal myself to you with serenity, looking to the future.
The colors of the seven chakras in this picture symbolize the harmony and balance in my heart. Gratitude reveals itself to me, I live the moment as it is given to me, and I thank my body for what it allows me to be.”
— Amélie
Céline SIMONPAOLI (13)

Céline SIMONPAOLI (13)

“Like a stone wall overrun by ivy,
In warrior mode to face the thunder,
Anger, hardship, misery,
Incomprehension, removal, acceptance,
Because life chose me, because it believed in me.
Because it’s not over, because I have no other choice,
But to say thank you, because it’s no longer a fight
But a life lesson that makes my other self, which allows me to be here!”
— Vanessa

My Vaness, I chose black and white to emphasize your beauty and your courage. Your pain needs no color, your words express them so much better. You accept what life makes you endure with incredible strength and courage. The disease mistreats your body and your femininity, but you fight relentlessly; it will not be able to stop your smile. At the moment when you were the most fragile, you impressed me by letting me photograph you as you faced this terrible life lesson. Your testimony is so admirable! Thank you for being part of my life and enriching it!
Fred GOUDON (75)

Fred GOUDON (75)

«“Eight years ago, Fred took my picture; he intensified my femininity, like a fashion model for the time of a photo shoot. After that first meeting, we wanted to relive those intense moments together, when from behind his lens, he could do what he knows so well how to do: enhance the beauty bodies possess.
Today, I am making a mudrā, a symbolic gesture that represents the Sacred Lotus. This is a link to our inner divinity; it’s the way to honor our strength, our beauty, our inner light, and our ability to rise above the mire and difficulties. With this Sacred Lotus, I say thank you to my body, to my light which shines even more today, and I rise even stronger.”
— Isabelle
Lauriane BIEBER (57)

Lauriane BIEBER (57)

Her skull in the open air, liberated.
Liberated, for the first time, in front of someone dear to her heart and myself, a photographer she doesn’t know. Geraldine—Gégé—a woman enriched by experience, a woman of strength and resilience, reminded me that the future was bland if it was built without ordeals.
A timeless fresco. I stop time, in this old warehouse, on this evidence, this rebirth, the one of today and tomorrow, the one that would not take place without the crossroads. Those where fingers intertwine for eternity, those where friendships that stand the test of time and life make us who we are and give us the courage and strength to face the dark tomorrows. In Gégé’s soul, these are the paths I see reflected, and the rays of her solar love towards those who have never let go—and will never let go—of her hand.
We will take pictures again, in five years, in the same place, with the hope that this old warehouse will still be standing. Standing like Géraldine will be.
Bertrand DUTHEIL (59)

Bertrand DUTHEIL (59)

“A declaration of my gratitude.
Perceptibly moved by that touch.
By your emotion when the diagnosis was announced.
By your unfailing support in the face of the threat.
By your positive attitude throughout the fight.
By your unchanging gaze as I changed.
By your daily precision.
I now know the pleasant sensation of feeling rich and soothed by these outstretched hands. Like a saving touch.
With this photograph I wanted to pay tribute to you and to express my gratitude for this past year.
To you, Romain, my rock, without whom all this would not have been so easy: thank you.
To Doudou, Simon, Léa, Eugène, Miki, Lo, and Ju, those hands that did not hesitate to follow me for this project: thank you.
To my family, my friends, my colleagues: thank you.
Finally, thank you to Bertrand for having immortalized my gratitude so well.”
— Marie
Pierre BORDERON (49)

Pierre BORDERON (49)

“Dear Cancer the Crab, Did you win the jackpot? Did you believe that? No kidding? That big, spindly body with those long arms and legs. More cells. What a bargain!
You missed! At first reluctant to overcome the obstacle, I was smashed in the face by a cinder block. KO. End of round one.
Delayed, dazed, a nervous breakdown. My brain was upside down. Immediately my breast was opened. Extraction, that’s you killed. Advantage me. One all.
Staggering, I welcomed the rays as they rained down, showered my body.
My heart. Incandescent. Hope. Tracing the road now on a new path, the breast tattooed symbolically. I feel mustang.
Urgency to live, fully, serenely, slowly. To win. Joyful unfolding of friendships. My daughter’s wings carry me. To emerge at last! Bursts of laughter. Roars. Lioness.
The last word for me: GRRR... ATTITUDE!”
— Nathalie
Silke SCHULZ (35)

Silke SCHULZ (35)

“September 2020.
Two little balls in my breast.
It is the beginning of a long journey.
My body aching and tired.
No war, no fight.
Tenderness is all I need.
To comfort my body, to overcome my fears.
And if I draw from the depths of my being an unsuspected strength,
It is thanks to you, who are by my side.
You have cared for me, reassured me, comforted me, supported me, accompanied me, loved me.
I know how much I owe you.
In the distance, I can see the light.
Thank you, life, thank you for being alive.
I am not quite the same, nor quite another.
I am healing; I have grown
A little of you in me”
— Anne H.

Throwing a spotlight on a story, a kindly gaze on her body, thinking of the big sigh when she pushed open the door of my studio with this project to make an image of what she was going through. Thank you, Anne, for your trust. Silke
Marie DAVERÈDE (75)

Marie DAVERÈDE (75)

I encountered Yasmine in a bar. A sunny and smiling young woman. A year later, she contacted me and told me she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Yet I could feel her resilience and positive attitude in her voice. She explained to me that she wanted to do a photo shoot as a way of accepting her new look. I was thrilled with her proposal and even more so with the photo session. There was lots of energy and a visceral desire to move forward!
It was difficult to choose one photograph because they all expressed something valuable but in this one, her gaze and her smile are adorned with gratitude.
Aurore MILLE (38)

Aurore MILLE (38)

“To be able to marvel every day at the small pleasures in our lives,
To return to the essential.
Yes, I breathe; yes, I laugh; yes, I live!
Thank you to my body for accompanying me and not letting me down in this ordeal.
Thank you to my strength, my courage, and all the love that I give and receive.
Thank you to my loved ones for their support and tenderness.
Thank you to the fog that gives way to the sun, and thank you to the sun for shining once again each day in our lives. Now, it’s up to me to invent the life that corresponds to me, a life with the colors of the rainbow, respecting myself. Thank you. I thank myself for giving me a new chance to finally learn to love the person I am.
Thank you for our wonderful encounter!”
— Laetitia and Aurore
Dalale SHOEIR (77)

Dalale SHOEIR (77)

My friend, Vanessa, who is not yet 40, has just been diagnosed with stage-three breast cancer.
Vanessa: “After the announcement, I had a strange 24 hours, with a thought that had invaded me: I may not see my daughter celebrate her 20th birthday. I cried – and then she came to me for a hug without imagining the hurricane that was breaking inside me. I took her in my arms and as I felt her against me, I stopped the echoing thought. I looked at her and whispered to myself: ‘We’re not there yet, she’s only five and we have so much to live for, to experience.’ I want to enjoy every moment!
Since then, I have been determined to enjoy every moment that life offers us. This disease has opened my eyes and I say thanks for each day that passes for offering me all these precious moments with my loved ones.”
As a friend of Vanessa and a photographer by profession, I want to show her how alive and beautiful she is by offering her this image of ordinary life full of joy with her daughter.
Caroline PLANQUE (18)

Caroline PLANQUE (18)

October 2020. I have an appointment with myself. With the tsunami that already took my mother 23 years ago. The wave overwhelms me. My reference points are collapsing. The future is crumbling. “You have to fight.” Fight against what? Against my deformed breast? Against the chemo that poisons me as much as it cures me?
On the contrary, I have no choice but to accept and accompany this medical protocol: a holistic approach, naturopathy, psychology, yoga, and long walks in the forest. These are all allies in confronting the disease, as well as my inner shadows and demons. This is where my field of action lies. Savoring each little victory. With daily gratitude for each step taken, each lesson offered to me, without thinking about tomorrow. Two days after my last session of chemo, I took this self-portrait. Cancer revealed me to myself, like those negatives that I love working on in the darkroom to print a luminous image.
Anne-Aël MERDY (17)

Anne-Aël MERDY (17)

There were seven of us. There are five of us.
Five women who didn’t know each other, but who had something in common.
The infinite desire to laugh, enjoy life, and make the most of every moment. The need to observe everything, to experience everything. So that each moment that passes is a victory over the unknown.
There are five of us now on board the Dakota C-47, a military plane, and we are dressed in evening gowns. Anachronistic you might ask? But aren’t we at war on a daily basis? Aren’t we women?
Under the Dakota’s astrodome, which is illuminated by the infinite sky, we look together in the same direction: towards the stars, you might say. Yes – it is our stars we are looking at! The ones that shine much brighter because of the path they have traveled and still guide us in the firmament. Our lost friends. Those who make our friendship, our solidarity, our love of life’s sparkle. We smile at them and enjoy every moment that life offers us.
There were seven of us.
Gérald SVOBODA (01)

Gérald SVOBODA (01)

«“The sweetness of a melody to heal ills.
The caress of the bow to heal wounds.
To create beauty, to reach for the chord and to accept this new body.
To touch your own heartstrings with humility.
To let yourself be carried by what is being played, to forgive yourself.
To observe with benevolence your contours, like the perfect curves of the violin.
To find your tuning fork, your inner ‘A’ when everything is chaos.
To get closer to familiar and loving vibrations.
To rebuild yourself at your own pace.
Yes, cancer is a tsunami, but it is also an incredible lesson in life. I discovered my strength, my femininity, and a particular care for my body. This body that was mutilated and mistreated during the long months of treatment. It is no longer as it was before, it is less enduring, and I respect this new rhythm that is mine. Every day I remember because the scar is indelible, but I can decipher the score of my new life and make an arrangement with what is now. For all this, I say thank you.”
— Élodie
Anne-Sophie SCHMITT (30)

Anne-Sophie SCHMITT (30)

Roxane and Fathé. Two women who meet for the first time under my photographer’s gaze.
As for me, it’s the first time I see women whose bodies bear the scars of cancer.
Their good mood made me forget about the scars, leaving only two women, two mothers, two warriors. Not once during this session did they complain about their fate. What a beautiful lesson in life!
They talk to each other. They go from laughter to tears. They laugh at each other’s thoughts. They simply love each other. When one breaks down, the other one bolsters her, with reserve and respect.
I admire them. I am there, in front of them, watching them. That moment when they form but one. No judgment. Just love.
Agnès COLOMBO (92)

Agnès COLOMBO (92)

“I’ve been through some very trying times, and I’ve come out even stronger. I’m here. I’m staying here.”
This is what Rita wanted to share with me during the photo shoot, like a warrior, victorious and so proud on her podium. After my Sein et Sauf project in 2013, where cancer screening was in the spotlight, this year I wanted to highlight all those women who had undergone a mastectomy. I met incredible women, friends, moms, and people with incredible stories. Stories that are sometimes so hopeful, and sometimes so difficult and unfortunate. I love to see the positive and enjoy every moment. Photography has always been a way for me to be useful. This is also the magic of the image: to remember the ordeals, to take a step back, to understand, to build.
Rita thanks life today for what she has become, and I thank her for sending us all this positive energy.
Céline ROLAND (79)

Céline ROLAND (79)

I’ve always been sensitive to what a woman’s body can exude. I like to heal their ills, to capture their pure but flayed souls. My encounter with Camille confirmed my photographic choices. We met the day the photo shoot was to take place and she showed herself naked completely naturally, as though it were a foregone conclusion. Her body’s expressiveness was worth any words.
“It’s OK; I’ve done the hardest part.” Camille was diagnosed with double cancer last year. Treatments, hair loss, breast removal, so many changes, so much psychological and physical upheaval, which force one to fight.
I was inspired by this raw and dark place to which I brought light, a contrast that expresses illness and healing. The ladder expresses the path to her rebirth, the boxing gloves, the fight. Her posture and gaze show that in the midst of the worst, comes the best and that one must never stop fighting.
Today, only one feeling drives her: gratitude.
Valérie PINARD (44)

Valérie PINARD (44)

The photograph conveys the affirmation of the choice of a woman who refused the reconstruction of her body by transforming it into an artwork. With her companion’s involvement, the composition of the photograph was conceived by the three of us. Color was preferred for its contemporary character, while the “Gratitude” theme carries with it serenity, hope, and future. These are the words Alexandra wishes to use to raise the public’s awareness of women affected by the disease: “Gratitude to these flowers tattooed on my new body transformed by cancer. Gratitude to my femininity and sensuality recovered by the magic of a hand delicately placed on the curves of my scar. Gratitude to this tattoo, my reconstruction, which allowed me to rediscover seduction again, which makes me feel like a woman and beautiful, beautiful as an Amazon, beautiful under my lover’s hand. Gratitude to my benefactors, Léa for her talent as a tattoo artist, my beloved in whose eyes I remain beautiful.”
Dominique DESPLAN (97)

Dominique DESPLAN (97)

“My daughter, my other,
My resplendent goodness,
Since the cancer made your body its host,
You are in a constant fight.
I still see you, a few years ago,
Me, sitting there styling your hair, and you,
Sketching your way through art.
My daughter, my motto,
You who nothing breaks,
You here display your scars.
Thank you for these moments. Thank you for our laughter.”

“My mother, my victory,
In your shadow, I was able to stand tall
In my life and art.
Today, sitting here, I draw from my soul
The strength of my existence.
Sweetness. Happiness. Recognition.

And here we are, without artifice,
Thanks to a chance meeting,
Under your artist’s eye,
To expose what explodes
In our bodies, in our hearts.
Grown-up. Fulfilled. Grateful.”
Dominique Desplan and Béatrice Losio.
Sarah PATRAS (69)

Sarah PATRAS (69)

To you who hit me and forced me to give in –
Without you, neither my body nor my soul would have changed.
Yes, my body has changed.
It was shaped to your desires; desires so great that it partially faded away.
But life has taught me to love it.
Wonderful ambassador of my femininity.
At once sensitive, delicate, yet so overwhelmed.
When I close my eyes,
I feel a deep love for it.
My heart fills with a warm and comforting flow, a testimony of the eternal feeling of gratitude I have for it.
This photo represents, with humility, the immense gratitude I feel for this wonderful gift that is my life.
— Sarah for Élodie
Nastassja WYDASZ (78)

Nastassja WYDASZ (78)

For my friend.
For all the battles we will fight together and sometimes separately.
This photograph was taken two days before they took it away from you.
I took this photograph while deep in shock. I wanted her to be seen as I see her. Strong!
She had already been so shaken up. One more shock, one more battle.
It is she who inspired me; it is this woman who inspires me. And not only today.
For Angélique.
Chris BOYER (13)

Chris BOYER (13)

“The pain was deep, well-targeted in her woman’s body, right where she was a woman!
She had to accept, heal, clean, and rebuild. Time was her ally, as well as the women and men who loved her.
She wanted to honor this time and offer her new image to the eyes of a professional.
The emotion was great. Her female body still remembers it.”
— Corinne

At the end of the photo session, Corinne was overwhelmed by emotion and broke down in the arms of the friend and make-up artist who had accompanied her.
Camille SAADA (44)

Camille SAADA (44)

“I have realized one thing: without my two cancers, I would have continued to live in fear, in my cocoon, never making decisions, putting off today’s desires until tomorrow. I am not a go-getter; I will never be. But Bob allowed me to dare. And above all, he reconciled me with my first loves: theater and writing. And I would never have believed that possible!
Bob, I don’t want to say thank you, I keep my thanks for my family and those who helped me in this adventure, but I am grateful to you, I admit it. And then enmity never prevented respect!”
— Krystell

Krystell was diagnosed with breast cancer twice in the space of three years. Her strength and love—of life, of others, of art—gave her unimaginable strength. She is my dearest friend and I have been rediscovering her every day since Bob’s return. I have rarely witnessed someone more loving, full of gratitude, generously giving of herself.
Carla SANTORO (60)

Carla SANTORO (60)

Élodie is one of the most courageous women I have ever met in my life. I don’t have enough words to describe her bravery, her courage in this battle. I asked her to help me with one of my graduation subjects; I had chosen the subject “breast cancer”, this terrible disease that affects 1 in 8 women, with 59,000 new cases every year. I was able to photograph her beauty, which was mixed with her heavy burden. Élodie knew how to make me understand and feel that, yes, we are really nothing on Earth, and that we must live intensely. I thank her, and her big heart and incredible family, who all helped her during this fight.
Please take the time to say “I love you” to the people around you, those who lift you up and make you aim higher. Take time for yourself, to travel, to refocus, to feel life the way she feels it. Thank you.
Olivier DENIS (93)

Olivier DENIS (93)

“I was my brother’s first model when his passion for photography began. Every week, Olivier asked me to pose according to a precise theme. He was bursting with imagination; I overflowed with gratitude. I understood that it was a powerful vector for him to convey his emotions and to reveal, in silver prints, each person’s inner beauty—that which has difficulty expressing itself. Olivier had a significant impact on my way of loving myself in my entirety. What could be more natural, at 46 years old, when I learned that I had a life-threatening cancer, than to ask him to let me shine in his spotlight again? This disease, of which he knew all the ins and outs, as his son had suffered from it a few years earlier, is so violent in terms of identity that it was necessary to stage it photographically. To continue to love myself, to accept my new image, to be comfortable with myself in this disease, to continue to fight. These photos allowed me, despite this failing body, to find comfort, defiant in this battle. They are not just photographs; they resonate like therapy. This expert gaze on his sick sister made me feel less debilitated, still a feminine woman even if I was bald! How powerful his magnificent photos are for revealing each person’s history, beauty, and depth”.
— Karine
Alison BOUNCE (83)

Alison BOUNCE (83)

“My name is Caroline. I lost my parents to cancer when I was 25, so I traveled around the world for a year, alone. When I returned, my cancer was there, hormone-dependent, very aggressive. Another adventure began. There were two phases. First, the fear. The fear of dying, of not being able to make it. Then, acceptance: understanding that my mother’s cancer is not mine and that I am not responsible.
Gratitude comes from others. I have a great deal of admiration for the photographers who accompanied me. They helped me surpass my fears. We worked together on looking at cancer, telling the story with great poetry, sensitivity, and femininity. It is thanks to them that I see the disease differently.
To my parents. From my mother, I’ve kept her smile, her strength, her fighting spirit in the face of adversity, even after four relapses, this ability always to get up again. From my father, his humor and not taking himself too seriously. Always see the positive side and enjoy life. More than ever, you are with me.”
— Caroline
Elyse LETEXIER (35)

Elyse LETEXIER (35)

This is not a breast. This is a victory.
This is not my breast. This is my victory.
An ode to my body, to all the fears and scars it carries inside, and to all those it shows outside.
By making this self-portrait, I simply wanted to remember how beautiful and strong this body could be, how its history and mine could be inscribed in the flesh and how important it was to be grateful to it.
My sensibility has always led me towards beauty and aesthetics. This is what I try to value in my photographic work. To show reality, without denying it or trying to hide it, but always putting a little poetry and beauty in it.
Alain SCHAFFNER (75)

Alain SCHAFFNER (75)

“— Oh, I heard a strange noise with my stethoscope.
— It’s my heart, my little heart!
— I think it’s a really big boo-boo in your breast, Mommy. I’ve put a bandage on it; it’ll make you feel better.
— Thank you, my darling, I feel much better already.
— Why doesn’t anyone come to see us anymore, Mommy?
— It’s because of the nasty virus. You know that I could only see the doctors, Dad, you, and your little sister during my chemo.
— So, did I treat you well, Mommy?
— Yes, thanks to your bandage my scar is almost invisible.
— So, we can go and clap the hospital workers at the window tonight?
— Yes, they deserve it, and you, too; it’s thanks to you that I survived.”
Diane CORJON (38)

Diane CORJON (38)

“The first gratitude I felt was the day I was diagnosed with cancer because it was only me, and not my children. During the battle, this disease drew scars on my body, my heart, and my family, but it is also what pushed me to bring forward my wedding and more simply, offered me one of the most beautiful days of my life. I am so grateful to be here and to have made it through this long year with my husband and boys.
It was important for me to capture the condensed snapshot of this journey with my son, who by falling against my breast with complete trust 15 months ago, revealed a pain that saved my life.”— Émilie

This photo illustrates the first moments of peace shared between Emilie and her son since her remission began. I wanted to capture the warm, bright, and colorful energy of this summer moment. As if this photo might set the tone for a gentler, gratitude-filled future.
Marie-Laure ROZE (21)

Marie-Laure ROZE (21)

To my doomed breasts / To my body that has become fragmented / To fear and suffering accepted / To anger and fate rejected ... I thank you.

To my breasts laid aside / To my lovers who have coveted them / To my son Paul who suckled them greedily / To the love of my life, François,
who loves me more than ever
... I thank you.
To my removed breasts / To my parents who prayed for me / To Clémentine, my surgeon, who granted my wish / To my students, who against my flat chest are cuddled
... I thank you.

To my forgotten breasts / To Loïc, draftsman, who faithfully listened to me and sketched / To Ludovic, actor, who, on stage, revealed me / To my soul, which, mirror lens, has framed me
... I thank you.

To my sanctified breasts / To my friends, for their ostentatious discretion and selfless compassion / To all the Amazons, fighters, those to whom I owe so much / To the life that flows through my fingers like the water of a lake, now appeased
... I thank you.
Charlène ROCK (92)

Charlène ROCK (92)

“My heart, which so many times has clenched for fear of stopping, of not feeling, beats in Maxime’s hand. A meteorite crashed into our world while I was carrying life. I could see the darkness, there was still love. So, I wrapped myself in it. The disease shatters everything but it will not have extinguished our love. With the rage to heal, we dodge the statistics. ‘We’: me in my flesh, him in his heart. They say I am ‘miraculous,’ I would say ‘loved.’ Today I live stronger; I savor it because time flies, quickly. My scars are part of me like the wrinkles that will dig into my skin. I honor them in front of the lens of Charlène, my best friend’s little sister, whom I’ve watched grow up. Today, it is she who watches me grow. My heart beats.”
— Maëlle
Céline FERRÉ (78)

Céline FERRÉ (78)

He has been there, every day. From the diagnosis, in early 2018, to the end of the treatment, in November that year. Long months punctuated by operations, chemo, radiotherapy, but also by his messages: “Good morning, how are you this morning?” “Good evening, I hope this session wasn’t too difficult.” He knew my appointment dates, my side effects, almost better than I did.
Then life separated us, a little. He nevertheless continued to ask about the reconstruction: “How many more operations? I’m here, you know? I’m holding your hand.” And we met again. I was eager to show him the “construction site,” as he called it. I took his hand and put it on my “almost” new breast. He was moved. So was I.
So, when I saw the poster campaign featuring the Estée Lauder Pink Ribbon Photo Award 2021, I thought of him. I offered to take this photo of his hand on my breast. To express my gratitude to him for having been there – my immense gratitude!
Aurélien Lam TRANCHET (77)

Aurélien Lam TRANCHET (77)

Nineteen roses for hope

Cindy is a schoolteacher and photographer, just like me. We met at a recent coffee get-together for amateur photographers. Sensitive to images that bear witness to life, I invited her to pose. She offered me her portrait, that of a woman suffering from breast cancer.

Nineteen was the day of Cindy’s first operation.
Nineteen roses for hope.
Nineteen roses for the life that beats in her, in you.
Nineteen roses to remember that none of us is immortal.
Nineteen roses, a single life.

Text written with invaluable assistance from Orianne Papin
Gilles VERDET (94)

Gilles VERDET (94)

It was summer when my sister left the hospital. A strange summer without sun. A wretched summer. All around, everything was covered in soot. The kind that sticks to the mind. The sky. The walls. The greasy clouds. Everything smelled of abandonment. The wild flowers deserted the wilderness. And yet. And yet, the first morning, under the barbed-wire sky, with small convalescent steps, carried by the trembling breath of her mutilated body, everything was suddenly reborn. More luminous. Even more vivid in the light of the day. The dazzling sensation of a strange familiarity, of a new moment similar to the time before. Life is strange. The world is strange. Joy is strange. The warm wind announced a favorable season coming from within, revenge for all those mistreated by fate. My sorrowful sister smiled at nothing; she captured the light better than a movie star. With full force. And with full lungs. Happiness is strange. That’s why we love it.
Jean-François GUILLON (56)

Jean-François GUILLON (56)

I met Claude by chance, one afternoon in July, in a street in Loches, Touraine. An elegant woman dressed in black gloves, without hair. Attracted by her “look,” I asked her if I could take a portrait of her.
The next day I went to her house with my wife, also a photographer. Claude told us about her very interesting, amazing, and full life. Then she told us about her health problems and revealed her body bruised by the disease. We spent this half day talking and photographing in her small apartment in the center of town. Claude is an admirable woman, always optimistic, with a big heart.
Her hands stretched towards the sky are a thank you to a god, for still being alive. The black and white brings us to the essential, the wide framing brings us into her home, into her intimacy.
When I talked to her about this contest, she immediately said “yes” and sent me this message: “May you make of a death a resurrection!”


“I remember the people who surrounded me, protected me, pampered me when my heart was looking elsewhere for a source of peace.
I remember the day when life exploded in my body again, a true healing of the spirit.
I felt like a woman right to the end of the treatment, a woman right to the tip of my breast.
Little notes of music in my head, drops of water sliding and playing with my fingers, thanking life and all my loved ones. The tenderness of the women and men who crossed my path to rebuild my future like a song of hope, like a promise of joy.
Then this snapshot in a great burst of laughter to embrace the world and open the way for me.”
— Christine
Carole PIVETEAU (44)

Carole PIVETEAU (44)

“What a liberation!
A sunny interlude that Carole was able to reveal. The new me, there, without hair, the one who fights and keeps smiling. But where do I get the strength to turn to the sun every day? From my parents, who are already in the light? From my husband and children? From my friends? My colleagues? My caregivers? Probably all of them. I am indebted to them for leaving the shadows behind me.
‘Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you,’ as the Māori proverb says.” — Annabelle

Annabelle is my friend. We’ve been close to each other since childhood. Two years separate her illness from mine, and although I know everything she is going through, she remains alone in the face of adversity. The sky rumbles deep down, but she chooses the light despite everything, standing, smiling, alive. More than ever. She seems to be at peace with life and what it imposes on her. She says she even loves it. Another stretch of road that we share, one next to the other. And what pride for me: from “Resilience” in 2020, here I am at “Gratitude” in 2021 for this same contest, passing behind the lens for Annabelle, as my friend Manuella did for me last year. Thank you, life.
Pierre MONNIER (25)

Pierre MONNIER (25)

“Without my two daughters, this fight would have been very different.”
“Mom, you’re still beautiful!” Manel, the younger sister, then aged five, told her on the night of the first Taxol injection on Thursday, March 4, 2021.

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