Hitchcock remade and fake IDs: Paris Photo's altered reality
From doctored passport pics to stick-on Hitler moustaches, maverick minds and painstaking processes reign at the photography show where art meets commerce
- Written by Sean O'Hagan, The Guardian
... On the contemporary front, I was taken with Eamonn Doyle’s big, vivid prints from his new series, K, which were on show at Michael Hoppen’s exhibition space. The series features a ghostly female figure, draped in all-concealing fabric and silhouetted in stark relief against the elemental landscapes of the Atlantic west of Ireland. The images are a dramatic contrast to traditional renderings of grieving and hauntedness and to Doyle’s previous series of works, which depict the passing parade of people he encountered on the streets of his inner-city Dublin neighbourhood.
His photobook of the same name, also launched at Paris Photo, is a more personally rooted exploration of grief that includes multilayered handwritten letters from Doyle’s mother to his brother, Ciaran, who died aged 33, in 1999. The book comes with a 10in vinyl record on which musician David Donohoe has created a contemporary rendering of a traditional Irish keening lament. Doyle continues to surprise with his ambitious multimedia approach.
... my highlight of the weekend was a visit to La Cite gallery in the ninth arrondissement, where there was mischievous invention aplenty from the maverick mind of Thomas Mailaender, contemporary photography’s reigning master of the absurd and the appropriated. The Fun Archeology houses just a sample of his vast stock of source material, the mainly internet-found oddities that provide the raw material for his photobooks and exhibitions. It is by turns alarming and hilarious. Where else could you find a “real” photo of Bigfoot, a fan album in which images of Grace Kelly have been doctored with Tippex-ed tears, a selection of porn postage stamps – as ingeniously tasteless as their name suggests – and an elaborate leather jewellery box containing a stick-on velcro Hitler moustache. Not, then, for the easily-offended, but, if you’re in Paris before 24 November, I’d recommend it – you won’t be as appalled, enthralled and entertained by any other exhibition this year.