LAURENT ELIE BADESSI
AGE OF INNOCENCE
French photographer Laurent Elie Badessi spent three years in the United States in order to produce these portraits of armed children. In his work, Age of Innocence, Badessi explores the complex and paradoxical relationship Americans have with firearms through the subject of children – one of the groups that is the most affected by gun violence in America.
Faced with a culture of guns when he lived in Texas in the 1990s, Badessi sought to uncover what the culture means in America. He says that “in order to highlight this ambivalent relationship between American youth and guns, Laurent Elie Badessi has chosen to photograph children with a gun, whether they are used to handling firearms or not.”
His photographs thus “explore the affective and sociological connection between a child with his weapon. Some are fake, others are real: here is the interest, according to [Badessi]– to capture the subject’s behaviour depending on the nature of his gun and on his experience ; but also to mention the potential confusion which may exist between the game and what is real.”