“Visible Policies” Dorothea Lange at Jeu de Paume
Le Jeu de Paume presents Dorothea Lange from October 16 to January 27, 2019
“Politiques du Visible”, traces in five parts the journey of this exceptional photographer. “Migrant Mother” will make this fine observer of a changing America a legend The first section tells the story of the beginning of his career. The Great Depression of 1929 hit America, and urban and rural populations were severely affected. It is in this context that Dorothea Lange abandons the studio portrait to venture into the streets of San Francisco where she will photograph demonstrations and homeless people.The other parts show all of her work on farm worker housing camps and her various trips where she covers twenty-two states. It highlights leaving them out of the American dream. Dorothea Lange documents this America of migration, shipbuilding, internment of American citizens of Japanese descent in 1942. Like an anthropologist, the captions of her photographs are more and more detailed and contextualize photography with precision.The scenography features a large, very airy central room that allows a hundred vintage prints to be displayed. Splendid. The curators of the exhibition (Pia Viewing and Drew Heath Johnson) succeeded in highlighting both the modernity of the shooting and the photographer’s very refined framing. Dorothea Lange remains a tireless witness of her time, photographing depression, drought, migrants, the poor. Her empathy for others makes her a little more than a great photographer. She died in 1965 from cancer.
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