Edition 2023

Association du MÉJAN

Spencer Ostrander and Paul Auster

Bloodbath Nation

What makes the United States the most violent country in the Western world?

This is the question raised by Spencer Ostrander’s photographic project, Bloodbath Nation [Pays de sang]. Over a period of two years, the photographer traveled widely in the United States, photographing the sites of more than thirty recent mass shootings. He presents a series of black and white photos of these massacre sites, void of all human activity. From these images of lifeless places, the writer Paul Auster retraces the history of gun violence in the United States, from the country’s “prehistory” up to today. In the banality of these supermarkets, schools, and churches, now deserted, there resonates the terrible recurrence of mass murder in the United States. The writer’s text, punctuated by “photographs of silence,” as he describes Spencer Ostrander’s work, examines a question of public security–even public health–dividing the country into two irreconcilable camps.
  • Institutional partners

    • République Française
    • Région Provence Alpes Côté d'Azur
    • Département des Bouches du Rhône
    • Arles
    • Le Centre des monuments nationaux est heureux de soutenir les Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles en accueillant des expositions dans l’abbaye de Montmajour
  • Main partners

    • Fondation LUMA
    • BMW
    • SNCF
    • Kering
  • Media partners

    • Arte
    • Lci
    • Konbini
    • Le Point
    • Madame Figaro
    • France Culture