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Taryn Simon, Memorandum on Security Assurances in Connection with Ukraine’s Accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (Budapest Memorandum). Budapest, Hungary, December 5, 1994, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015 © Taryn Simon

On View

Taryn Simon in
16th Biennale de Lyon: Manifesto of Fragility

Through December 31, 2022
Various locations in Lyon, France
www.labiennaledelyon.com

Manifesto of Fragility, curated by Sam Bardaouil and Till Fellrath for the 16th Biennale de Lyon in France, explores fragility as one of few universally felt truths in our divided world. Ten photographs from Taryn Simon’s series, Paperwork and the Will of Capital (2015), are included in the exhibition, among the work of more than two hundred artists. In the series, Simon addresses the instability of executive decision-making and the precarious nature of survival by examining accords, treaties, and decrees drafted to influence systems of governance and economics. All involve the countries present at the 1944 United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference, which addressed the globalization of economies after World War II.

Taryn Simon, Memorandum on Security Assurances in Connection with Ukraine’s Accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (Budapest Memorandum). Budapest, Hungary, December 5, 1994, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Imperial Office of the World Knights of the Ku Klu Klan (KKK), Sharpsburg, Maryland, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

On View

Taryn Simon in
Selections from the Collection

Through April 30, 2023
George Eastman Museum, Rochester, New York
www.eastman.org

Since the invention of photography, the documentation of war has been a subject of interest to the camera and consumers. People have long relied on photographs to view and grapple with the harsh realities of war and conflict. This selection ranges from the Crimean War (1853–56) to the Afghanistan War (2001–21). The works challenge us to think critically about how photography documents and disseminates information about war, and how photographers’ approaches to recording war has shifted over time. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Imperial Office of the World Knights of the Ku Klu Klan (KKK), Sharpsburg, Maryland, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

Installation view, Human Brains: It Begins with an Idea, Fondazione Prada, Venice, April 23–November 27, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Marco Cappelletti, courtesy Fondazione Prada

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Human Brains
It Begins with an Idea

April 23–November 27, 2022
Fondazione Prada, Venice
www.fondazioneprada.org

Curated by Udo Kittelmann in collaboration with Taryn Simon, this exhibition fills three floors of Ca’ Corner della Regina and is the result of an in-depth research process carried out with Fondazione Prada and a scientific board chaired by Giancarlo Comi and composed of physicians, philosophers, scientists, and researchers. It is part of a multidisciplinary project of the same name launched by Fondazione Prada in November 2020 and centering on the brain, a unique organ due to the complexity of its functions, which are fundamental in the characterization of human beings.

Installation view, Human Brains: It Begins with an Idea, Fondazione Prada, Venice, April 23–November 27, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Marco Cappelletti, courtesy Fondazione Prada

Taryn Simon, Cryopreservation Unit, Cryonics Institute, Clinton Township, Michigan, 2004–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Alter + Ego

June 30–October 29, 2022
Eres Foundation, Munich
eres-stiftung.de

In a world in which scientific developments offer new opportunities for extending human life spans and optimizing our bodies’ physical performance, this exhibition presents artistic approaches that illuminate the promises of various aspects of “human enhancement” and explore ideas around how we come to terms with aging and the ephemeral nature of life itself. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Cryopreservation Unit, Cryonics Institute, Clinton Township, Michigan, 2004–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

Installation view, Taryn Simon: Birds of the West Indies, Conservatory Gallery, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York, June 7–October 23, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Liz Ligon

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Taryn Simon
Birds of the West Indies

June 7–October 23, 2022
Conservatory Gallery, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York
www.bbg.org

In Birds of the West Indies, which takes its title from a taxonomy by American ornithologist James Bond, Taryn Simon identifies, photographs, and classifies every bird that appears in the first twenty-four James Bond films. Casting herself as Bond the ornithologist, Simon trains her eye away from the agents of seduction—luxury, power, violence, sex—to look only in the margins.

Installation view, Taryn Simon: Birds of the West Indies, Conservatory Gallery, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, New York, June 7–October 23, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Liz Ligon

Taryn Simon, Troy Webb; Scene of the crime, The Pines, Virginia Beach, Virginia; Served 7 years of a 47-year sentence for Rape, Kidnapping and Robbery, from the series The Innocents, 2002 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Előhívás/Emplotment

May 13–August 28, 2022
Ludwig Múzeum, Budapest
www.ludwigmuseum.hu

The guiding principle of Előhívás/Emplotment is the adaptation of both material and personal sources of trauma by means of the tools of visual art and a novel analysis of their performative representation. The duality of the exhibition’s Hungarian and English titles reflects the complexity inherent in the topic of trauma. The exhibition is primarily conceived as a platform that, rather than showing works that seek to represent traumatic experiences and tragic events, focuses on cre­ative processes that use art as a potential active tool for processing trauma. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Troy Webb; Scene of the crime, The Pines, Virginia Beach, Virginia; Served 7 years of a 47-year sentence for Rape, Kidnapping and Robbery, from the series The Innocents, 2002 © Taryn Simon

Installation view, Give and Take. Bilder über Bilder, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Germany, May 20–August 28, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Fred Dott

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Taryn Simon in
Give and Take. Bilder über Bilder

May 20–August 28, 2022
Hamburger Kunsthalle, Germany
www.hamburger-kunsthalle.de

This exhibition, whose subtitle translates to Images upon Images, is part of the 8th Triennial of Photography Hamburg 2022. Give and Take explores processes of exchange and appropriation of visual material in contemporary photography. The artists featured in the exhibition draw on a rich trove of material, from early picture archives, historical film footage, museum collections, classic print media, and digital images on social media and in search engines. In their respective mediums, ranging from photography and film to installation, they respond to images that originated in another time or were made for a different purpose. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Installation view, Give and Take. Bilder über Bilder, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Germany, May 20–August 28, 2022. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Fred Dott

Taryn Simon, Ronald Jones; Scene of the arrest, South Side, Chicago, Illinois; Served 8 years of a Death sentence for Murder and Rape, from the series The Innocents, 2002 © Taryn Simon

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True Pictures?
Zeitgenössische Fotografie aus Kanada und den USA

March 12–June 26, 2022
Museum der Moderne Salzburg, Austria
www.museumdermoderne.at

This group exhibition, whose subtitle translates to Contemporary Photography from Canada and the USA, presents work by more than thirty North American artists spanning three generations whose photography is informed by our digital age—both through their employment of digital technologies and in terms of their engagement with the “flood of images” that defines visual culture of the twenty-first century. This exhibition has traveled from the Sprengel Museum Hannover, Germany. Work by Gregory CrewdsonTaryn Simon, and Jeff Wall is included. 

Taryn Simon, Ronald Jones; Scene of the arrest, South Side, Chicago, Illinois; Served 8 years of a Death sentence for Murder and Rape, from the series The Innocents, 2002 © Taryn Simon

Installation view, Taryn Simon: The Color of a Flea’s Eye: The Picture Collection, New York Public Library, 2020. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Rob McKeever

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Taryn Simon
The Color of a Flea’s Eye: The Picture Collection

September 24, 2021–May 15, 2022
New York Public Library
www.nypl.org

A project nine years in the making, The Color of a Flea’s Eye foregrounds the New York Public Library’s Picture Collection, whose storied images have been available, for more than a century, for the public to sift through in search of visual references of every conceivable kind. Intrigued by the Picture Collection since childhood, in 2012 Taryn Simon embarked on a study of its underlying patterns, codes, and orders. Her photography of its contents reveals it to be an inadvertent recorder of changing social mores, disclosing latent fault lines of power, race, and gender.

Installation view, Taryn Simon: The Color of a Flea’s Eye: The Picture Collection, New York Public Library, 2020. Artwork © Taryn Simon. Photo: Rob McKeever

Taryn Simon, Press XL, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015, Brooklyn Museum, New York © Taryn Simon

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The Slipstream
Reflection, Resilience, and Resistance in the Art of Our Time

May 14, 2021–April 10, 2022
Brooklyn Museum, New York
www.brooklynmuseum.org

The Slipstream draws examples from Brooklyn Museum’s contemporary art collection to contemplate the profound disruption that occurred in 2020. Borrowing its title from an aeronautical term that refers to the pull of the current that is left in the wake of a large and powerful object, the exhibition examines the placement and displacement of power that runs through American history and continues today. The show features more than sixty works by multiple generations of artists from the 1960s to the present day, including Titus Kaphar, Rick Lowe, Nathaniel Mary Quinn, and Taryn Simon.

Taryn Simon, Press XL, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015, Brooklyn Museum, New York © Taryn Simon

Gregory Crewdson, Untitled, 2003–08 © Gregory Crewdson

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True Pictures?
Zeitgenössische Fotografie aus Kanada und den USA

November 6, 2021–February 13, 2022
Sprengel Museum Hannover, Germany
www.sprengel-museum.de

This group exhibition, whose subtitle translates to Contemporary Photography from Canada and the USA, presents work by more than thirty North American artists spanning three generations whose photography is informed by our digital age—both through their employment of digital technologies and in terms of their engagement with the “flood of images” that defines visual culture of the twenty-first century. Work by Gregory Crewdson, Taryn Simon, and Jeff Wall is included.

Gregory Crewdson, Untitled, 2003–08 © Gregory Crewdson

Taryn Simon and Aaron Swartz, Image Atlas (2012), installation view, C/O Berlin Foundation © Taryn Simon. Photo: David von Becker

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Taryn Simon in
Send Me an Image: From Postcards to Social Media

May 29–September 2, 2021
C/O Berlin Foundation
co-berlin.org

This exhibition considers photography’s transformation from an illustrative medium to one of society’s most significant means of communicating today. The photographs and projects on view illuminate phenomena such as censorship, surveillance, and algorithmic regulation, which affect human activities in our data-driven era. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon and Aaron Swartz, Image Atlas (2012), installation view, C/O Berlin Foundation © Taryn Simon. Photo: David von Becker

Taryn Simon, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Contraband Room, John F. Kennedy International Airport, Queens, New York, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Future Food: Essen für die Welt von morgen

May 31–August 28, 2021
Deutsches Hygiene-Museum, Dresden, Germany
www.dhmd.de

This exhibition, whose title translates to Future Food: What Will We Eat Tomorrow?, investigates the political, ethical, and cultural significance of eating. This interdisciplinary show features works of contemporary art that address one of the most urgent questions of our time: “How will we—and can we—feed ourselves in the future?” Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Contraband Room, John F. Kennedy International Airport, Queens, New York, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

Installation view, Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark, April 21–May 30, 2021. Artwork © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon
An American Index

April 21–May 30, 2021
Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark
louisiana.dk

The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art is presenting the entirety of Taryn Simon’s photographic series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar (2007), recently acquired for its collection. Documenting in photography and text objects, sites, and spaces that remain inaccessible or unknown to the American public, this unsettling body of work presents a rare portrait of the United States through the lenses of science, religion, medicine, entertainment, security, and politics.

Installation view, Taryn Simon: An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark, April 21–May 30, 2021. Artwork © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Chapter XVIII, from the series A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII, 2008–11 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Dear Truth: Documentary Strategies in Contemporary Photography

February 5–May 2, 2021
Hasselblad Foundation, Gothenburg, Sweden
www.hasselbladfoundation.org

This exhibition explores how nine contemporary artists approach ideas of truth, facts, and objectivity, and how they, guided by ethical reflections, make urgent sociopolitical matters visible in their work. Their projects address some of the most challenging issues of our time: human rights, the environment, democracy, migration, technology, and violence. The truth plays a central role in their practices, not as an authoritarian or neutral vision, but as a starting point for socially engaged contemporary art. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Chapter XVIII, from the series A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII, 2008–11 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Contraband Room, John F. Kennedy International Airport, Queens, New York, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Spaces of No Control

October 1, 2020–February 19, 2021
Austrian Cultural Forum New York
www.acfny.org

Spaces of No Control is an international group exhibition that explores the notions of the modern city and its signifying dystopias of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This multifaceted show unites contemporary artists based in Austria and the United States to comment on current definitions of citizenship and public space. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Contraband Room, John F. Kennedy International Airport, Queens, New York, 2007, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Sausages (prohibited), 2010, from the series Contraband, 2010 © Taryn Simon

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Terminal

August 13, 2020–February 14, 2021
City Gallery Wellington, New Zealand
citygallery.org.nz

Terminal is an exhibition of international art made about the airport, not for it. The exhibiting artists variously address the airport as site, form, or symbol—often by subverting its iconography and processes, or by tackling its history and politics. Work by Andreas Gursky and Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Sausages (prohibited), 2010, from the series Contraband, 2010 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Chapter XIV, 2011, from the series A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII, 2008–11 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Measure Your Existence

February 7, 2020–January 24, 2021
Rubin Museum of Art, New York
rubinmuseum.org

Measure Your Existence questions and expands the Buddhist concept of impermanence through artworks by six contemporary artists who explore duration, survival, memory, fate, history, loss, disappearance, and reappearance. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Chapter XIV, 2011, from the series A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I–XVIII, 2008–11 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Transatlantic Sub-Marine Cables Reaching Land, VSNL International, Avon, New Jersey, 2006–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
We Never Sleep

September 24, 2020–January 10, 2021
Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, Germany
www.schirn.de

This exhibition explores the “golden age” of espionage during the Cold War in the context of media super-exposure through the works of more than forty international artists. On view are a multitude of artistic strategies and unexpected objects: Paintings, photographs, videos, sculptures, and installations address the topic from a contemporary perspective. The works in the show touch on aspects of spy culture such as surveillance, paranoia, conspiracy, threat, camouflage, cryptography, manipulation, and propaganda. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Transatlantic Sub-Marine Cables Reaching Land, VSNL International, Avon, New Jersey, 2006–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

Adriana Varejão, Horto Jerked-Beef Ruin (diptych), 2001 © Adriana Varejão

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Time for Outrage!
Art in Times of Social Anger

October 29, 2020–January 10, 2021
Kunstpalast Düsseldorf, Germany
www.kunstpalast.de

Based on a 2010 manifesto of the same title by former French resistance fighter Stéphane Hessel, the exhibition Time for Outrage! brought together more than forty international artists who visualize, reflect on, and comment on various facets of anger and rage in our society during this era of political turmoil and democratic crisis. Work by Taryn Simon and Adriana Varejão was included.

Adriana Varejão, Horto Jerked-Beef Ruin (diptych), 2001 © Adriana Varejão

Photo © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon
Assembled Audience

September 26–November 20, 2020
Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio State University, Columbus
wexarts.org

Taryn Simon’s Assembled Audience (2018) draws on the notion of engineered applause, gathering individuals with varying political, corporate, and ideological allegiances into a single crowd. Simon assimilated recordings of single attendees applauding at local concerts, sporting events, and political rallies at three of the largest venues in the capital city of the bellwether state of Ohio. Her experiential installation wholly immerses the visitor in a darkened space punctuated only by the sound of randomized individual applause tracks; the same crowd never comes together twice. Presented for the first time in the city of its creation, Assembled Audience proves prescient in the isolation that it forecasted as these same gathering spaces, once crowd-filled, are now quieted by covid-19, the spaces respectively repurposed for eviction trials, police trainings, and a field hospital.

Photo © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Oxalis tuberosa, Peru (7CFR) (prohibited), 2010, from the series Contraband, 2010 © Taryn Simon

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Civilisation, Photography, Now

June 13–October 18, 2020
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, New Zealand
www.aucklandartgallery.com

Civilisation, Photography, Now features more than two hundred works from one hundred international photographers. The exhibition considers patterns of mass behavior and the complexities of life in twenty-first-century urban environments. This show originated at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, as Civilization: The Way We Live Now. Work by Mike Kelley, Vera Lutter, and Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Oxalis tuberosa, Peru (7CFR) (prohibited), 2010, from the series Contraband, 2010 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, Finding Pursuant to Section 662 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as Amended, Concerning Operations in Foreign Countries Other than Those Intended Solely for the Purpose of Intelligence Collection. White House, Washington, D.C., United States, 1981, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
Pine’s Eye

February 29–August 30, 2020
Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburgh, Scotland
www.trg.ed.ac.uk

Taking its name from that of Pinocchio (the word means “pine eye” in Italian), Pine’s Eye explores what it means to be human in times of ecological change. The exhibition offers alternative perspectives for how we understand ourselves in the face of environmental crisis. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, Finding Pursuant to Section 662 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, as Amended, Concerning Operations in Foreign Countries Other than Those Intended Solely for the Purpose of Intelligence Collection. White House, Washington, D.C., United States, 1981, from the series Paperwork and the Will of Capital, 2015 © Taryn Simon

Taryn Simon, White Tiger (Kenny), Selective Inbreeding, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge and Foundation, Eureka Springs, Arkansas, 2006–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon

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Taryn Simon in
The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene

March 19–August 16, 2020
DePaul Art Museum, Chicago
resources.depaul.edu

The World to Come: Art in the Age of the Anthropocene chronicles an era of rapid, radical, and irrevocable ecological change through works of art by more than forty-five international artists. Our age, a new geological epoch defined by human impact, has controversially been termed the Anthropocene. Despite the challenges of disaster and denial, artists in the exhibition respond with resistance, imagination, and new ways of seeing and thinking about the world to come. This exhibition originated at the Harn Museum of Art, University of Florida, in Gainesville. Work by Taryn Simon is included.

Taryn Simon, White Tiger (Kenny), Selective Inbreeding, Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge and Foundation, Eureka Springs, Arkansas, 2006–07, from the series An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar, 2007 © Taryn Simon