A feature-length portrait of a small community of outliers living on a blighted street in a marginalized part of California, directed by Katy Grannan.
A lot of the language surrounding Songbook is about community and American culture…and that stuff’s in there, but actually what I wanted to do with it is talk to something more primal, more internal, and more about the human condition than the American condition. It’s the great problem of consciousness. —Alec Soth
To learn more about Soth’s work and publications, please visit his artist page.
Jonathan Blaustein reviews Assigment No. 2, a publication by TBW Books that explores incarceration through a copy of a handwritten essay written by an inmate, Mr. Nelson, from San Quentin Prison. The essay compares and contrasts a Sugimoto and Misrach photograph as part of an art assignment written while in solitary confinement in 2011.
The essay is smart, but takes a turn towards poignant when Mr. Nelson alludes to his own situation in life. The metaphor of a world changing beyond recognition, seen in the pictures, also seems well-chosen, for someone living on the inside. — Jonathan Blaustein
From aPhotoeditor online posting on 13 February 2015.
To learn more about the works of Sugimoto, please visit his artist page.
To learn more about the works of Misrach, please visit his artist page.
Adam Fuss, From the series ‘My Ghost,’ 2000
For The Art Show, organized by ADAA, Fraenkel Gallery is collaborating with Peter Freeman, Inc. on Mirror/Mirror–two related presentations that focus on self-portraits. The Fraenkel Gallery booth will feature self-portraits by Berenice Abbott, Diane Arbus, Richard Avedon, Sophie Calle, Claude Cahun, Lee Friedlander, Adam Fuss, Nan Goldin, Peter Hujar, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Eadweard Muybridge, Nicholas Nixon and Hiroshi Sugimoto.
The fair will be held 4–8 March 2015 at the Park Avenue Armory in New York.
Hope to see you there!
Alec Soth discusses his newest body of work, Songbook, which pulls images from the LBM Dispatches made alongside writer Brad Zellar. The LBM Dispatches were created over a series of three years in which Soth photographed different regions across the country, acting as news reporter. The series explores the desire for connection amidst a strong sense of American individualism.
‘I was interested in the newspaper, in part, [because] it used to exist as this vehicle of social interaction,’ he says. ‘It’s a place where, [especially in] small towns, you would not only have the news but you would have notification that someone had passed away or there was going to be a public dinner at the church— it connected events to each other.’ —Alec Soth
Tabitha Soren interviews artist Katy Grannan about her photographic series of people and communities taken along Highway 99 in California. Grannan describes her impulse to photograph as a means to preserve and honor the lives of her subjects.
In retrospect, I can recognize that growing up around a funeral home influenced the way that I looked at every single human being in the world. Photographing people was a way of memorializing them – acknowledging their value and their mortality at the same time. I was almost mourning every person. In the back of my mind I was always aware that people, that life, kept moving on. —Katy Grannan
Eugene Reznik of American Photo interviews Alec Soth about his latest work, Songbook, his connection with music, and the idea of narrative in photography.
My whole career in photography has been this sort of battle with text, and with story, and narrative…The Songbook, it sort of liberated me of that, and the pictures can just exist on their own. —Alec Soth
Alec Soth’s Songbook, published by MACK books contains a selection of images gleaned from his work creating the “LBM Dispatch” newspapers with friend, Brad Zellar. Nicole Crowder of The Washington Post reviews the publication.
The photographs are at times funny and wry, displaying a mix of irony, dark humor and longing in a vein similar to two other famous Minnesota boys, the Cohen brothers, often evoking a cinematic quality to everyday Americana. — Nicole Crowder
But for me to have an authentic voice, I need to follow whatever stirs me. Maybe it would make me a better citizen if I read Wendell Berry rather than watched Breaking Bad, but it wouldn’t make me a better artist.—Alec Soth
In an interview with Aperture Remix’s curator, Lesley A. Martin, Alec Soth discusses the influence of Robert Adams and Allen Ginsberg on his work. He emphasizes the importance of finding his own voice, and finding what moves him. The interview also includes a video, which takes the place of still photography, and serves as a response to the work of Robert Adams.
My work shows the beauty in so many different kinds of people because I never photograph anyone who I don’t think is beautiful. I never take an intentionally mean picture. I won’t show a picture where a person doesn’t look beautiful.—Nan Goldin
Pure Magazine interviews Nan Goldin on her work in fashion, self-portraiture, her influences, which include fashion, her friends, Renaissance art, and film. The article also discusses her future project ideas, and her current interests, like light and landscape, with the intent of exploring atmosphere.
In an interview at the Art Biennale Venice, Christian Marclay, who also won a Golden Lion for best artist at the ILLUMInations Exhibtion, discussed his project, The Clock.
I think it has an appeal because everybody is concerned with time, you know, you never have enough time to do anything, especially to see art. And in Venice, there’s so much art to see, and so little time, so it’s a real challenge.—Christian Marclay
When I’m photographing, I don’t see a picture, I see faces.—Garry Winogrand
In this short video, curators at the Jeu de Paume discuss the work of the late photographer, Garry Winogrand (1928-1984), known for his images of American life. Winogrand’s images are currently on view at the Jeu de Paume (14 October 2014 – 8 February 2015), and is the first retrospective in twenty-five years. Divided into three sections, the exhibition allows viewers an opportunity to see images that were previously unprinted, and some that have never been exhibited before.
‘I always consider antique objects to be my mentors,’ he says. ‘As an artist I try to measure my art against masterpieces from the past. They give me hints to the secrets of human history, particularly history of consciousness and of spirituality.’—Hiroshi Sugimoto
The Telegraph Luxury interviews artists in conjunction with the Barbican Art Gallery’s exhibition “Magnificent Obsessions: The Artist as Collector.” Sugimoto, who was a dealer of Japanese folk art prior to dedicating himself to his photography, has a portion of his recent acquisitions on display in the show.
RATP, in partnership with the Jeu de Paume, shows how it transformed some of the Paris Metro stations into an exhibition space showcasing several images by the late photographer, Garry Winogrand (1928-1984). His photographs are on view at 16 different stations throughout Paris from 14 October 2014 to 8 February 2015, and are intended to complement the current retrospective at the Jeu de Paume, which also ends on 8 February 2015.
I’ve always thought of them as a giant stage – everything from bomb ranges to nuclear testing happens in our American deserts. —Richard Misrach
Richard Misrach sat down with Vice Magazine to discuss his recent work on the US/Mexico border and his collaboration with composer Guillermo Galindo. He talks about his interest in photographing desert landscapes and the impact of finding “human trash” – personal artifacts – along the border.
These things end up being loaded symbols, things that tell us where the country is headed—Richard Misrach
Artist Richard Misrach and composer Guillermo Galindo collaborated to produce a body of work commenting on the United States and Mexico border. Misrach roamed the vast expanse of the border for five years. By documenting the desolate landscapes through photography and collecting found objects along the way, the collaborative work offers an intimate view into the tragic state of the border.
It could be backpacks, and water bottles, tennis shoes, things like that. Each one of those objects has this incredible story, and it’s a tragedy. Every single one of them is a tragedy.—Richard Misrach
Over five years, Misrach traveled across the border documenting the despondent landscapes while gathering abandoned objects. Accompanying Misrach in the interview is composer Guillermo Galindo. Misrach asked Galindo to make instruments out of the objects he had found at the border. The subsequent instruments sound like the desolate landscapes captured in Misrach’s images.
The Guardian reviewed Nicholas Nixon’s The Brown Sisters series. The article explores his initial inspiration to make the portraits, how the sisters age differently over time, and what the viewer can intimately feel through these four strangers.
It is, among other things, a testament to the power of one great, simple idea. Out of that idea, though, Nixon has made a series with an extraordinary cumulative power that rests on photography’s singular ability to capture the passage of time and, with it, human aging and the lurking shadow of mortality.—Seth O’Hagan
MoMA will exhibit Nicholas Nixon: Forty Years of The Brown Sisters in the Museum Lobby from November 22nd, 2014 until January 4th, 2015. Since 2006, the Museum has acquired the series both as tactile contact prints and as 20 x 24″ enlargements. This upcoming installation will feature all 40 images and will be the first time the museum has displayed the full series in this scale.
No claim is attempted here about the state of the art – only something about the state of the gallery.—Jeffrey Fraenkel
Fraenkel Gallery is pleased to announce The Plot Thickens, an exhibition accompanied by a 250-page catalogue celebrating the gallery’s 35th anniversary. The Plot Thickens features 100 photographs selected with forethought over the past five years. By juxtaposing works from the masters of photography with prints from the anonymous and unknown, The Plot Thickens offers an unorthodox insight into the medium spanning three centuries. The majority of the images featured in The Plot Thickens are being exhibited for the first time.
Fraenkel Gallery opened in San Francisco in September 1979 with an exhibition of recently discovered albumen prints by the nineteenth-century photographer Carleton Watkins. Since then, the gallery has presented more than 300 exhibitions exploring photography and its connections to the other arts, and published 55 books on subjects ranging from Edward Hopper’s influence on photography to the sculptor David Smith’s multi-decade involvement with photographs, as well as the complete library of Diane Arbus and nine monographs by Lee Friedlander.
Nicholas Nixon was interviewed by TTBook Radio about his experience creating his series ‘Old People & Patients’ and ‘People with AIDS.’ Many of the images in these series are the visual outcomes from his years as a volunteer for people in nursing homes. Nixon intimately speaks here about his influences, process, and on “giving the brightness depth.”
Individuality. Showing individuals. Showing their spirit. Showing their family. Showing it in an unprejudiced way that had no agenda except a certain amount of passion and clarity.—Nicholas Nixon
Richard Misrach’s new work on the border between the United States and Mexico is the cover story for the second edition of The California Sunday Magazine. Misrach’s work, which also includes collaboration with sound artist Guillermo Galindo, documents the tragic narrative between a collision of culture and politics present along the 1,969 mile border.
All the photographs are about found objects — shotgun shells from a Border Patrol shooting range, a soccer ball, a boot, a Spanish translation of Doctor Zhivago — that are banal but laden with meaning. I’m always on the lookout for the anomalous.—Richard Misrach
Nan Goldin will be presented with The Achievement in Portraiture award at the 12th annual 2014 Lucie Awards at Carnegie Hall in New York on November 2nd. The Lucie Awards are an annual non-profit event held by The Lucie Foundation honoring the greatest achievements in photography recognizing artists worldwide. Previous honorees of The Lucie Awards include Richard Misrach and Richard Avedon.
Robert Adams Walking. South of Grover, Colorado
Fraenkel Gallery is privileged to be one of the 169 exhibitors participating in the 118th edition of Paris Photo.
The fair will be held 13-16 November 2014 at the Grand Palais.
Fraenkel Gallery will be showcasing our artists at Booth B30.
Hope to see you there!