Garry Winogrand - PBS American Masters

I got lucky and saw Fraenkel Gallery’s Instagram post about the PBS American Masters documentary on Garry Winogrand which aired last Thursday night. 

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Winogrand is my favorite photographer, I saw his 1988 retrospective at MoMA curated by Szarkowski, I saw SFMoMA’s 2015 retrospective, I saw the exhibition at Pier 24 gallery where they displayed prints of every image from his Women are Beautiful book on one massive wall, and I even attended Geoff Dyers's lecture last year at Getty for the release of his book on Winogrand.

I have seen several videos of interviews of Winogrand, have numerous books on his work, but I always want to learn more about him and his process.  This PBS documentary is amazing.  It has old interviews of Gary, lecture audio from Szarkowski speaking about Winogrand’s work, video shot by Winogrand, interviews of scholars, as well as interviews of his family and friends.  Great insight in to the man. If you like Winogrand’s work, documentary photography, or just great images, you will enjoy this film.

Also, as a documentary photographer who photographs on the street, I particularly loved these following three quotes from the film about Street Photography :

“If we applied standard definitions of propriety and niceness to photographers working in the street we’d be left without a lot of the great pictures in the history of photography.”

Jeffrey Fraenkel – Gallerist

“I find it kind of intriguing because we allow the State to photograph us so relentlessly and yet people don’t seem as bothered by that as they do by someone who is clearly an artist.”

Michael Ernest Sweet – Photographer


“It’s an artistic process, you live within this process.  So the questions of surveillance, political correctness, all of that stuff, it’s just totally irrelevant.  Now perhaps that makes the few of us who even understand what I’m talking about right now are dinosaurs or insensitive ghouls or whatever…but who cares about that?”

Tod Papageorge – Photographer



New York Galleries - October 2017

I was in New York last month to show my work and to photograph.  I also took some time to hit a few galleries in Chelsea, here is what I found:

Laurence Miller Gallery  521 West 26th Street, Fifth Floor, NYC

I loved the vintage work they had up (new exhibitions up now), some amazing images I had never seen before from the masters.  W. Eugene Smith's image from the 1941 World Series at Yankee Stadium really got my attention.  I have photographed a lot of baseball so I am always interested in how other photographers, especially a master, choose to document the sport.  I also thought it was interesting this image was taken just before the start of WWII.  Robert Frank's prints were another favorite.  I am very familiar with the work but the style of printing for these prints was interesting, gave me more insight of him as a photographer.  I also appreciated the photographic technique and craftsmanship of Erica Deeman’s prints. Her work has received a lot of attention recently.  The gallery staff knows the medium well, I enjoyed talking with them.

Robert Mann Gallery   525 West 26th Street, NYC

What a cool space and I loved Julie Blackmon’s photographs.  Her large prints are amazing, best way to experience her images, they allow you to see all the details.  I especially like her new work, "Trapped" & "Holiday", and I really appreciate her humor.  I also picked up a copy of Julie's book, great addition to the library.  Gallery staff at Mann has energy and you can tell they love what they do.  Can't wait to visit again.   

Friedman Benda Gallery   525 West 26th Street, 1st Floor, NYC

I went to the opening of Misha Kahn's Midden Heap by accident while looking for Kasher Gallery's opening and am thankful I did.  Friedman Benda describes Kahn's exhibition this way: 

By allowing the illogical and the irreverent to take over his creative process, Kahn transforms a white-walled gallery space into a delightfully inventive alternate reality. “Each piece is part of a landscape I imagine as the earth gets swallowed by the sea,” he says. “No single object has any specific meaning. It’s all part of a feeling.”

I have no idea what it was but it was so cool, and describing it as a "feeling" is accurate, especially during the action of a New York opening.  This exhibition runs through December 16, 2017, if you're in NYC it is worth experiencing. 

Steven Kasher Gallery   525 West 26th Street, 2nd Floor, NYC

I enjoyed Jill Freedman’s work. The prints were obviously vintage based on their condition and the craftsmanship; I always like opportunities to see vintage prints because I can learn so much more about the photographer.  Debi Cornwall's work definitely had merit too.

Benrubi Gallery

521 West 26th Street, 2nd Floor, NYC

I thought Matthew Pillsbury’s images were very interesting, unique, and well crafted.  Definitely best to view prints because the images really work at that scale.  I don't know if this will make sense, but for me, when I looked at these images for a few moments, their layers showed themselves and a deeper meaning came through.  I see how it would be possible to move through the gallery quickly and think you saw these images but you really wouldn't have.

Strand Books   828 Broadway, NYC

Okay not a Gallery, and in a different part of the city, but this book store is amazing and worth talking about.  I picked up a copy of Meryl Meisler’s book ‘A Tale of Two Cities: Disco Era Bushwick’.  It's not the tightest edit or greatest printing of a book I have ever seen but I just liked a lot of her images, found it to be an interesting documentation of the New York during that era.  Could have filled my suitcase with everything I found on their racks.



Pier 24 Gallery

William  Karl Valentine's review, and images, of Pier 24 Gallery's exhibition "The Grain of the Present"

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