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Turbulent America: 1960-1990
February 16 - May 30
Turbulent America is a large portrait of the United States seen from the eyes of a French photographer, Jean-Piere Laffont. Laffont, who arrived in New York in 1965, travelled through the country for more than three decades, trying to capture its spirit.
The retrospective in the rooms on the third floor of the Candiani Cultural Centre includes the photographer’s work from his arrival in the Big Apple until the late 1980s, a long period in which he documented the social, political and cultural aspects of the United States.
Laffont was in the front row at some of the decisive moments in American history. He aimed at the misfits, the destitute and the rebels. He focused on the explosion of the sexual revolution, the civil rights movement and the consequences of restrictions on freedom of speech. Harold Evans writes that Turbulent America is a striking portrait of the blatant speed of American life, its traumatic divisions, its intoxicating ambitions, its heroes and heroines, and the endless parade of failed and weird characters.
Laffont’s lens offers a glimpse of the main political issues as they emerge, fade or degenerate. Laffont has noticed that, at first glance, the individual photographs taken during that quarter of a century seem to portray only a great deal of confusion… riots, demonstrations, disintegration, collapse and conflict. But taken as a whole, they show the chaotic and sometimes painful birth of 21st century America.