Fonce Alphonse

Fonce Alphonse represents one of the most intimate and yet coded events in the life of a couple, marriage. For the occasion, my fiancée and I intentionally exceeded the speed limit on our wedding day, put the pedal to the metal in order to have the Police Nationale snap our nuptial portrait.

Police photography is certainly one of the most appropriate approximations of what one could call photographic "objectivity". As an official legal document, it calls forth all the power of the judicial institution to extra-photographically guarantee its status as evidence. At the end of the nineteenth century, Alphonse Bertillon understood perfectly well that this authority was precarious and depended on the systematization of photographic protocols. The desired result of these procedures - standardizing the picture-taking apparatus and photographic practices, codifying and quantifying the body, combining images, measurements and formalized descriptive texts - was to minimize and control the polysemic potential of the photographic image, to produce certainty.

With Fonce Alphonse, at the exact moment the police deploy this apparatus in an attempt to identify us, our identities are in flux, marriage bringing about a series of changes to our social and civil status.

    Black and white silver gelatin print, 20cm x 30cm
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  • SFMoma, San Francisco, acquisition 2019
Fonce, Alphonse