Documentary snapshots at Jeu de Paume in Paris

In Paris, the Jeu de Paume presents the very 1st anthological exhibit in France of the work of American photographer Taryn Simon.

She utilizes both pictures as well as text to attempt to reach a deeper meaning of photography. Taryn offers a series of expressions regarding the role of images in the society – control, power, the separation between the public and institutions are only some of the topics she explores.

In 203, in her first work ‘The Innocents’, she took a series of photos of people convicted in a wrong way, imprisoned and finally freed from the death row. In their photography cases gave the criminal justice system a tool which changed innocent citizens into criminals by wrong eyewitness recognition.

Taryn Simon told that photography is uncertain and therefore less faithful to reality than they believe. But, at the very same time, the photographs have power than mere words. He told that he believe that he believes that he uses photography to show the ever-changing space where knowledge is created. Therefore, attempt to make these 2 poles: 1 photographic, 1 textual, and the viewer moves between these 2 poles and is constantly making new judgements, new interpretations, new assumptions about the narratives that are the subject of the work.

From the ‘An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, to ‘A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters’, Taryn Simon works as a researcher or an historiographer: she searches for links, data as well as facts and she attempts to point out the red line which joins up all the elements.