Recalling events from almost 70 years ago, the Syracuse-based photographer Allison Beondé’s work explores the way phenomena and fable help shape society’s cultural consciousness.
‘1947, Roswell’ is a reinvestigation of the famous UFO sightings of 1947 in Roswell, NM. Interested in the way that this fictionalized and historic moment has been passed down and shifted over time, the photographer started to think about the notion of truth and the role of photography in defining it. Using different techniques, Beondé reveals many ways a photograph can be read – purely as an image, as a piece of evidence, or a falsification. From paper negatives and archival photographs to digital images, the image both represents a physical evidence documented by the Roswell police station and FBI, and exist as its own document of place. “I’m not interested in recounting the story of James Ragsdale as a credible source, or as an exercise in documentary or historical photography, but simply as what it is — a story; one that is open ended, unresolved, strangely beautiful, and for the most part regarded as a lie,” says Beondé.