Passing Through Eden
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Tod Papageorge began to photograph extensively in New Yorks Central Park in the late 1970s, a few years after he turned from the Leica to medium-format cameras. These pictures, gathered in Passing Through Eden, luminously trace, as Rosalind Krauss has written about Papageorges work, photographys capacity to embrace the sensuous richness of physical reality [in order to] come tothat fullness which Baudelaire used to call intimacy, when he meant eroticism. From picture to picture, Papageorge constructs a realm that resembles our common world, but that, in its intense marrying of the sensual and poetic, irresistibly calls up the Eden invoked in the books title. Even more than this, he has edited and sequenced Passing Through Eden to parallel in its first half the opening chapters of Genesis from the Creation through the (metaphorical) generations that follow on from Cain before giving over the rest of the book to a virtuosic run of pictures that, from one to the next, might invoke Man before the Flood, Shakespeares The Tempest, or energetically confirm that the human comedy is alive and well in Central Park.