One great and inadvertent gift of art is to make sense out of the chaos of life, and on this closing day of Taryn Simon'”A Living Man Declared Dead and Other Chapters I-XVIII” exhibit, you'll see an awesomely complex and rewarding photographic triptych painstakingly produced across the world over four years. Simon's work here focuses on what she calls “bloodlines” or, how external forces of tradition and privilege bump up against internal forces of “psychological and physical inheritance.” Some subjects: victims of Bosnian genocide; toxic test rabbits in Australia; and Leila Khaled, a Palestinian, who in 1969 became the first woman to hijack an aircraft. Text accompanies the images, but there are also blank portraits, which represent crucial links as well but remain blank for reasons that abort that which might otherwise present a single linear narrative. In her way, Simon has made sense out of something that would have remained nonsensical had it not been for a focus and devotion that, in itself, makes all the sense in the world. Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, 152 N. Central Ave., dwntwn.; Mon., Jan. 7, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; $12, $7 seniors and students. (213) 626-6222,

Mon., Jan. 7, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., 2013

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