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Garry Winogrand: The Sixties

I look at the pictures I have done up to now, and they make me feel that who we are and how we feel and what is to become of us just doesn’t matter.  Our aspirations and successes have been cheap and petty…  I can only conclude that we have lost ourselves, and that the bomb may finish the job permanently, and it just doesn’t matter, we have not loved life.  I cannot accept my conclusions, and so I must continue this photographic investigation further and deeper.  This is my project. –Garry Winogrand, application to the Guggenheim Foundation, 1964

Fraenkel Gallery is pleased to present GARRY WINOGRAND: THE SIXTIES, an exhibition examining Winogrand’s perceptions of one of America’s most turbulent decades. The exhibition will be view from September 11th through November 1st, 2008.

Garry Winogrand was one of the most influential photographers of the last half-century, the artist whom John Szarkowski of the Museum of Modern Art called “the central photographer of his generation.” Though many of his photographs from The Sixties depict the juncture where politics, media and the public collided, his images serve as far more than a record of the events that defined an era. Reflecting as they do Winogrand’s unparalleled observations of the complexities of life, the pictures broke open new possibilities for how a “documentary” photograph might be defined.  Among the subjects Winogrand chose as mirrors for his own doubts and uncertainties were John F. Kennedy at the 1960 Democratic National Convention, a “be-in” at Central Park, a group of dancers at the Metropolitan Museum’s Centennial Ball, and the Apollo 11 moon shot.

Aside from these public ceremonies, Winogrand reveled in the drama of the street itself, requiring no ostensible “event” for his subject. His frames are filled with twitchy, restless motion and agitated faces; seen together his images represent an authentic and original response to an evolving age of anxiety.

Winogrand’s photographs are included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and numerous other museums. His career was examined in a monumental survey at the Museum of Modern Art in 1988, and in several other exhibitions since then.