French contemporary artist Sophie Calle has a new solo exhibition, “Pour la dernière et pour la première fois,” at the Emmanuel Perrotin Gallery in the Marais. Calle, arguably one of the most important artists of our time, explores intimate subjects and produces emotionally intense and profoundly moving work (the exhibition “Rachel, Monique”, about the death of her mother, was particularly powerful).
Here, “La Dernière Image” (“The Last Image”) is a series of 13 works. Alongside a portrait of each person is text recounting the story of how they became blind and a photograph of the last memory they have of the visible world. We see the final images of a doctor, a minibus and a sunset and read of first-person accounts of the moments leading up to the loss of sight. Also on display are a collection of 14 films, “Voir la Mer” (“To See the Sea”) in which Calle documents the reactions of people from inland Turkey as they see the sea for the first time.