Combining local approaches and international reports constituted the editorial speciality of the fortnightly journal In Extenso launched in 2000 by a newspaper company based in Dijon. On the occasion of the Hanover world exhibition programmed for that same year – the last to have been held, moreover – the journalists forming the team masterminding the project wanted to commission an artist to produce a series of exclusive images that would reflect their editorial stance. Thus the theme of the different European cultural worlds was chosen. With this objective, a special issue and a series of large prints were envisaged by the patrons.
The series made for the commission by the newspaper In Extenso consists of fifteen colour photographs: interior and exterior views, by day and night. As the magazine In Extenso has ceased publication, Serralongue's photographs for the commission have been presented in the monographic catalogue of the artist published in 2002 by Presses du réel, the editorial department affiliated to Le Consortium.
The mediator suggested bringing in Bruno Serralongue. Serralongue who has been active since the early 1990s uses photography, setting prior constraints on what he does. His work is determined by laying claim to the impersonal nature of this medium, establishing a principle of equivalence between the micro and macro aspects of international news stories, locating his practice in the context of a seeming journalistic report all the better to highlight the reconstruction of reality inherent in the political and media images broadcast by the press. From among his series of photographs, mention may be made of those devoted to local celebrations organized by the Alpes-Maritimes department (1994), the transfer of the mortal remains of Che (1997), the concert organized by the Beastie Boys in Washington in aid of Tibet (1998), or again Sunday Afternoon (2000), for which the artist set himself up one Sunday afternoon in the biggest public park in Rio de Janeiro and offered to take portrait photographs of passers-by (an unusual queue quickly formed). With no press card or accreditation, Serralongue has also merged with the team of photographers from various newspapers such as Corsica Matin (1997) or Jornal Do Brasil (2000). He comments: From the very start and this is still true today, the general context of my work can be summed up in commissions. For me they're a very important element. As they are in the general context of photography: I think there are very few photographs in the world that are not produced as the subject of a prior commission.