In the late ’70s, some Swiss cantons decided
to use for their whole administrations the official social security
(AVS) number, which every person of age was allocated when they
started working. The procedure was, theoretically, to be accompanied
by restrictions on the use of this information.
The work “Identities” was inspired by this
will to codify the citizen and gather information about him outside
a human context. In opposition to this will of the government, I
took pictures of friends who were close enough for me to be able
to reveal their personality through these images. They were all
photographed in their environment, the setting being unchanged.
If the faces have been deliberately obliterated, the streaks of
light are intended to emphasize a character trait of the person
photographed. Each image is full of symbols and its interpretation
should lead the spectator to discover the personality of the model
even better than the facial features would have done. The women
who have never worked bear their husbands’ numbers.
N.B. Currently, each person is given an official number from the
age of 18.