Paris Diary - Garry Winogrand at Jeu de Paume

 Garry Winogrand - New York, 1955 - Garry Winogrand Archive, Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona. © The Estate of Garry Winogrand, courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco

Garry Winogrand - New York, 1955 - Garry Winogrand Archive, Center for Creative Photography, The University of Arizona. © The Estate of Garry Winogrand, courtesy Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco

I was in Paris for two days on 18th-19th November for a museum marathon session. The first exhibition I visited was Garry Winogrand at Jeu de Paume.

Garry Winogrand (1928–1984), who chronicled America in the post-war years is still relatively unknown because he left his work unfinished at the time of his death, but he is unquestionably one of the masters of American street photography, on a par with Walker Evans, Robert Frank, Lee Friedlander and William Klein.

Winogrand, who photographed “to see what the world looks like in photographs,” is famous for his photographs of New York and American life from the 1950s through the early 1980s. 

The photographs in the exhibition and the accompanying catalogue create a vivid portrait of the artist, a chronicler of postwar America on a par with such figures as Norman Mailer and Robert Rauschenberg, who unflinchingly captured America’s wrenching swings between optimism and upheaval in the decades following World War II.

This video features the curators of the exhibition, Erin O’Toole and Leo Rubinfien sharing some insights into Winogrand's work.  

I had not seen Garry Winogrand's work before, and I quite liked his style and subjects. Americana captured from his point of view. I also like what he said in the short clip included in the above video, 

Photographs or any works of art that have any real power…they play with what you think you know…they make you question what you think you know. Let's put it this way, they make you question your preconceptions. 

The exhibition is divided into three parts, here's a small selection from it: 

Down from the Bronx presents photographs taken for the most part in New York from his start in 1950 until 1971, A Student of America looks at work made in the same period during journeys outside New York; and Boom and Bust addresses Winogrand’s late period—from when he moved away from New York in 1971 until his death in 1984—with photographs from Texas and Southern California, as well as Chicago, Washington, Miami, and other locations. This third section also includes a small number of photographs Winogrand made on trips back to Manhattan, which express a sense of desolation unprecedented in his earlier work.


The exhibition is on till 8th February 2015.

www.jeudepaume.org