1 / 6       West Ninth Avenue, Amarillo, Texas, October 2, 1974, from the Uncommon Places series. Courtesy of the artist and 303 Gallery, New York © Rencontres Arles.

2 / 6       Stephen Shore, Room 125, Westbank Motel, Idaho Falls, Idaho, July 18, 1973, from the Uncommon Places series. Courtesy of the artist and 303 Gallery, New York. © Rencontres Arles.

3 / 6       During the visit to the exhibition Stephen Shore. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.

4 / 6       During the visit to the exhibition Stephen Shore. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.

5 / 6       During the visit to the exhibition Stephen Shore. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.

6 / 6       Dururing the visit to the exhibition Stephen Shore. © Stefania Biamonti/FPmag.

Stephen Shore

Given that who is writing just can not rejoice in the sight of the works of Stephen Shore (whilst appreciating the work in theory), the retrospective presented at the Espace Van Gogh, is undoubtedly the one that has marked the reconciliation with the editorial office of this year's edition of Rencontres. After enough bitter disappointment from what we had seen at the beginning of our Arlesian visits, this exhibition has finally shown to be up to the reputation of the festival in which it is housed. The credit undoubtedly goes to Marta Daho, curator of the exhibition, who has created with grace and analytical precision the exhibition divided on two floors of the Espace. The selection and sequencing of the work allows it to tackle an author undoubtedly complex and outside the box, whose work – as Daho herself writes on the introductory panels of the exhibition – «is valuable to grasp the contemporary scene and certain prevailing practices of current photography».
The careful choice of the works and setting is essentially chronological which allows the visitor-spectator to participate in, if not share, the process of Shore's research. As a result, when you reach the second room on the first floor, after going through those of the ground floor, one is able to understand the meaning and the culmination of the work. The analysis of ordinary everyday life ends up taking on the value of a... x-ray on the insight of the universe taken into consideration. Shore frequently chooses to put the people who insist on this universe into the background, often even relegating them to a shadow of invisibility. What emerges is the story of metonymic slices of contemporary society. His narration proceeds with traces collected with apparent casualness, a collection of emblematic objects in itself insignificant, illuminated by the critical overview of the author and reassembled in an unpublished mosaic within which its crevices we move every day without, generally, even realising it.
The value of this exhibition is in the opinion of who is writing (the specification is not rhetoric, but implicitly expresses the enthusiasm towards the artist that moves the rest of the editorial) deeply educational. It is necessary to renew, even at the cost of being repetitive, the congratulations to the curator who has taken over a lifetime’s work and has ordered it by choosing to put together the right composition to create those points of support necessary to wade through the certainly not easy rushing flow of work which, over the decades, has shocked and innovated the very way of understanding the approach to photography. Following and letting one’s self be guided by the devised track it comes naturally to climb the steep paths of a corpus of images that certainly is not to gratify the viewer's eye, but to try to provide answers to many questions on the subjects photographed, on society and on the medium the same used to conduct the survey. A nice way to start the reconciliation with an edition which, until now had appeared to be quite objectionable. [ S. I. ]

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STEPHEN SHORE
by Stephen Shore
Space Van Gogh | until September, 20th 2015
admission fee: 12,00 €

published on 2015-07-14 in NEWS / EXHIBITIONS

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