Miriam Rosen

  • Gilles Ehrmann

    Gilles Ehrmann is certainly not an unknown photographer—witness this retrospective, which was first presented at the prestigious “Rencontres internationales de la photographie” in Arles last summer. But it is no exaggeration to call him low profile. During the 1950s and ’60s, it is true, he worked for two quality magazines, Architecture d’aujourd’hui (Today’s architecture) and Réalités, and he does exhibit from time to time, but for some forty years, he has clearly preferred to pursue a personal imperative, a kind of photophilosophical quest that has most often left its traces in the form of

  • William Klein

    After 45 years as an American in Paris, photographer William Klein speaks an effortless, nearly accentless French, but he still expresses himself with the brashness, the humor, and the ironic edge of a native New Yorker. There is something of the same incongruous mix in his photographs. For all that has been made of his iconoclastic subjects and shooting style—the wide-angle distortions, the grainy images, the multiple exposures, the camera movement that have always been his trademark—the image itself is communicated with the elegant formalism of a painter.

    Klein himself makes no secret

  • Shimon Attie

    “Last night I was in the Kingdom of Shadows,” wrote Maxim Gorky nearly a hundred years ago in his celebrated account of an early Lumière brothers film projection at the Nizhni-Novgorod Fair. If the image comes to mind in connection with Shimon Attie’s exhibit of 15 color photographs from his “Finstere Medine” project, 1991–93, there is more than a metaphor at work. In fact, the project began as a series of outdoor projections in a run-down Berlin neighborhood that once housed poor, unassimilated Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. (Finstere Medine means “disreputable quarter” in Yiddish.)

  • Yves Trémorin

    It was the model rather than the photographer who came to the opening of this exhibit. She was there from the very beginning, alone, studying the images—her images—from a distance, with a mix of intensity and apparent satisfaction. Her hair was slightly longer now, and her body, so very naked and vulnerable on the wall, was enveloped, protected literally from neck to toe. But the face was the same, and her presence only served to confirm (if such a confirmation was necessary) that these photographs are the result of no ordinary collaboration.

    The model, we are told, is a friend of the photographer,

  • Françoise Quardon

    With its constellations of tentacled playpens, prophylactic umbrellas, sacred-heart menorahs, and levitating bathtubs suspended under the dome of a 19th-century chapel-turned-gallery, Françoise Quardon’s Take me to the river (all works 1993) does not simply mirror our fin-demillenium, but ultimately lures us into taking a hard look at our own reflections.

    Like her earlier works, the seven pieces that make up Take me to the river are assembled from found objects, but with this installation Quardon has begun to combine her collectibles with forms that she herself fabricates out of fiberglass, resin,

  • Jean-Paul Berger

    “You saw nothing at Hiroshima, nothing.” The phrase from Alain Resnais’ Hiroshima, mon amour, 1959, filters back almost subliminally. And at first glance, the black and white photographs that make up Jean-Paul Berger’s Autobiographie, 1988–93, could almost be film stills—a series of oneiric tableaux in a curiously shallow space, seemingly lit from behind. The visual stream of consciousness is, like the space it inhabits, impenetrable: a man’s nude body, nearly always decapitated by the frame, women’s faces, nearly always without bodies, a few hands, eyes, locks of hair, an emblematic bird,

  • Michel Séméniako

    Time in Michel Séméniako’s black and white photographs measures itself not in 60ths of a second but in millennia. “Les Dieux de la Nuit” (The gods of the night), who have lent their name to this exhibition, inhabit the sacred trees of Senegal, the prehistoric menhirs of Brittany, the cliffs of Normandy, the amphitheaters of Naples, the palaces of China, the temples of India. For more than a decade, Séméniako has been seeking out those deities with a large-format camera and an assortment of flashlights. The technique, he points out, could not be more “antitechnological”: he poses the camera on

  • Corinne Mercadier

    Corinne Mercadier’s photographs are like memories: they evoke places, times, and moods that the mind’s eye fuses into slightly faded compositions. The 20 works in this series—uniformly small, square, and untitled—offer fragmentary glimpses of a seaside town in southeastern France (the same one where Jean-Jacques Beineix filmed Betty Blue, 1986). In these unassuming views of beaches, boats, jetties, and rows of wood-frame houses, Mercadier explores and reconstitutes the private face of public space. There are no people to serve as markers of space or scale, only the ambiguous play of surface and

  • Agustín Victor Casasola

    Agustín Victor Casasola (1874–1938) may not have been “the photographer of the Mexican Revolution,” as he is popularly known, but he was the founder of Mexico’s first photo archive, and as such, not only preserved but shaped a vision of history encompassing the whole of Mexico’s political and social life during the first third of this century. In 1921, drawing on the thousands of photographs in his archive, he published the first edition of the now-classic Album Histórico Gráfico de la Revolucíon (Illustrated historical album of the revolution, 1921), which traces the history of the revolutionary

  • Jephan de Villiers

    Jephan de Villiers’ antidote to the end of history is the continuity of nature. Working with the random findings of the forest—branches, twigs, bark, leaves, feathers, dirt—he creates a private world of figures and forms that hovers between memory and premonition. His tiny tree-creatures consist of no more (and no less) than masklike faces perched on limbless bodies of scrap wood or bark; garbed in dried leaves and/or winged with a pair of feathers, they cluster together in wall reliefs and shallow boxes, in mysterious coffers, and in an enormous processional entitled Mille et trois souffles

  • Jiří Kolář

    Jiří Kolář’s collages, the artist explains in his Dictionary of Methods, “are made to be laid out flat, to be seen from all angles.” But, he adds with typical true-false naiveté, “they can also be hung.” The fifty-odd works in this exhibit are indeed hung, but they have been guaranteed a horizontal existence as well, figuring as they do among the 110 collages in the recently published French translation of the Dictionary of Methods (written in French in 1983 and already translated into English, German, and Italian) True to its title, the Dictionary consists of 118 alphabetical entries, from “

  • Matej Kren

    Imagine a hollow tower of books in assorted shapes, sizes, and languages, stacked like bricks of knowledge from floor to ceiling. And when you peer inside, up and down, this latter-day Tower of Babel suddenly (thanks to two mirrors lining top and bottom) becomes an endless tunnel. Jorge Luis Borges could hardly have done better, but Idiom, 1991, is the creation of Slovak artist Matej Kren, a visual polyglot who works with drawing, painting, sculpture, silk screen, installation, photography, xerography, film, and, above all, his imagination.

    Typically, Idiom is as simple and unpretentious in form