Taryn Simon: The smartest photographer in the room?

When you first enter the gallery, the massive framed collections of single person portraits, brings you closer.

To see, read, understand, get smacked in the emotional gut.

Taryn Simon has premiered her new opus, 4 years in the making, at MOMA.Taryn Simon: A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII

On the initial viewing, we were overwhelmed by all of the images. Trying to decipher where one part started and the other ended the story.
Then we were drawn in.
There are complex stories told in multiple chapters.
One is the series of portraits, that allude to a family tree. In the center of this tryptich, is the explanation of providence of the portraits, and why you should really pay attention. In the 3rd segment are images of artifacts relating to the story.

The stories?
From a story of a man who was declared dead, along with his siblings, so a cousin could claim right to familial land.
The family of a man involved in the atrocities of the genocide of the jews, during WWII, are traced and posted.

If you can get to the actual show , you will be rewarded with an experience in full size legibility.

There are accompanying books, but the portraits get reduced to postage stamp size or less.
One of the most thoughtful and cerebral photographers of our time, Taryn Simon has spoken at the TED conference,

and Taryn Simon previous works, have all been able to delight the eye, while creating surfaces for repeated viewing.

If you take the time to discover her work, you’ll be well rewarded.

Taryn Simon: A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII
May 2–September 3, 2012
The Robert and Joyce Menschel Photography Gallery, third floor

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