A sumptuous still life by Paulette Tavormina illustrated the story "A Moveable Feast" in the July issue of National Geographic Magazine. Featuring fruits and vegetables from four markets in Manhattan, the image highlights Tavormina's signature painterly aestheticism while commenting on the hot-button environmental issue of produce sourcing. Explore the feature online here.
The Embroidered Image is "Sew Revealing" at Robert Mann Gallery
By Jessica Dawson


For women, photos are the things we live up to—and get shown up by—every single day. We get it: Once you're in the pages of Vogue, your thighs and breasts belong to surgery or Photoshop, or both. It's not reality.

Traditionally, sewing is women's work, and many of these artists (all but two are women) address the constraints of gender.

Yet our mammalian brains, impervious to logic and fond of fantasy, remain willing to think, if for a moment: Could this be real? And, more important: Should this be me?

So let the weak among us bid welcome to photography shows alert to the lies photos tell us. "The Embroidered Image," at Chelsea's Robert Mann Gallery, is one such enterprise; it collects 11 artists who alter photos with needle and brightly hued thread, adding the most flagrant of adornments to found and new images. Each reminds us of a photograph's inclination to enhance, exposing the artifice inside every frame.

Traditionally, sewing is women's work, and many of these artists (all but two are women) address the constraints of gender. Several use portraits of 1950s-era ladies done up in bouffants, or old Hollywood movie stars, or generally gorgeous folk. Jessica Wohl sews starburst-like masks across sitters' faces, lending them a mystical, almost animal quality that suggests a wildness lurking below the costumes of polite society. Hagar Vardimon stitches cheerful colored threads in fishnet patterns across headshots of black-and-white movie stars like Joan Fontaine, as if plotting out a face lift or a skin disease. Whether it's to ruin or enhance her subjects' beauty remains unclear.

Continue reading the article here.
Route 66: The Road and The Romance
The Autry in Griffith Park: George Montgomery Gallery
Los Angeles
June 8, 2014 - January 4, 2015


A selection of black-and-white works by Jeff Brouws will be exhibited alongside Ed Ruscha's original photographs from Twentysix Gasoline Stations in a new exhibition at The Autry Center in Los Angeles, focused on the rise and fall of the famed Route 66. The museum writes:

In 1956, Route 66 was effectively bypassed by the Interstate Highway System. In this final section, the popularity of Route 66 is further diminished by air travel and the allure of attractions such as Disneyland and Las Vegas. The commercial exploitation of Route 66 by multinational chain stores, restaurants, and motels also eroded the unique appeal of the road. Ironically, the first McDonald's was opened along the route in San Bernardino in 1940. The exhibition documents the degradation of the road and its surrounding businesses with pieces of asphalt from the original roadway and several photographs from Ed Ruscha's Twentysix Gasoline Stations (1963) set alongside Jeff Brouws's stark 1991 "updates" of the same sites.

Read more about the exhibition here.

Road Trip: America Through the Windshield
Brattleboro Museum and Art Center
Brattleboro, Vermont
June 27 - October 26, 2014


Brouws' Storage Units, 2002-2011 will be exhibited at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center beginning late June. The museum writes:

Since ancient times, depicting the landscape has been a way for artists to explore the relationship between nature and humankind. In recent times, that relationship has often been experienced by car, as part of a daily commute or an epic Kerouacian journey. Through imagery ranging from urban street scenes, in which billboards and stoplights replace trees and mountains, to national parks and highway tourist attractions, the artists in this exhibit explore the ways in which the road has transformed our relationship to the American landscape.

Read more about the exhibition here.
The latest exhibition at the Robert Mann Gallery is one of home sewn sensibility. Orly Cogan, presenting the work of various artists, curates the show titled The Embroidered Image. The exhibition takes vintage photographs, catalogue pages and x-rays, reclaiming them with hand embroidery to turn them on their head.

The work intrudes upon the picturesque life of the past. Delicate lines of thread insert color, destruct staged portraiture, expand the line of vision and block out the images altogether, interrupting typical ethereal suburbia. It's as if the photos were found in a dusty family photo album hidden in the attic. This combined with the idea of home crafting, give the indication of domestic life, expanding the idea of embroidery to serve a more artistic purpose.

The artists each take their own angle on The Embroidered Image. Melissa Zexter uses the context of the scene, overlaid with pattern to fit the theme. Pinky/MM Bass dissects naked human bodies, sewing in anatomical forms. Diane Meyer's work uses pixilation, blurring the stark solid architectural environments. Hagar Vadimon uses brightly colored geometric imagery, masking out portraits and inserting totem poles into perfectly manicured suburban lawns. Matthew Cox and Orly Cogan use cartoons to add childlike pop culture on x-rays and art catalogues, poking fun at more sophisticated matters. Photo collages are sewn together by Jane Waggoner Deschner, in an almost scrapbooking manner, another connection to domestic life. Jessica Wohl uses thickly embroidered starbursts to block out entire subjects to isolate certain areas of the photo. And finally Hinke Schreuders' rough embroidery, ink and linen give the look of images printed on raw silk.

The show runs until August 15.

—Ashley Minyard

Read the article online here.
Multiple Exposures: Jewelry and Photography/The Embroidered Image
Museum of Arts and Design/Robert Mann Gallery, New York

The steady stream of images that comes our way electronically every day can make any single picture feel intangible, endlessly reproducible, and easy to dismiss. But two current exhibitions are emphasizing the materiality of the photograph — its object-ness and uniqueness. The Embroidered Image at Robert Mann Gallery through August 15 includes 10 artists who transform photographs using the humble domestic tools of needle and thread...

...Handiwork is the subject of The Embroidered Image as well, in terms of its decorative and its transformative properties. In a show that could have tilted toward the sentimental, curator Orly Cogan instead chose works that were pleasantly odd and humorously unsettling. The most successful images went beyond altering the surface of the image and engaged with the medium on a deeper level. The sneaky needlework in Diane Meyer's photographs of barren Berlin streetscapes, for example, mimicked photography's pixelization. Jane Waggoner Deschner quilted black and white photographs together in a contemporary twist on the domestic arts of the family photo album, quilts, and keepsakes, but her works include symbols or existential questions (What can I hope?). Orly Cogan's works involved pages from auction catalogues that she embellished with wry needlework doodles. A Babar-like embroidered elephant pops out of a window on a page documenting a Peter Beard elephant, for example. The Cat in the Hat and Lyle the Crocodile make appearances in other works — all pages from auctions catalogues, all featuring artworks by men (Saul Steinberg, Robert Indiana, Adam Fuss), complete with pricing information and provenance. Cogan playfully undercuts both the art market and the prevalence of the male artist in that market with her pointed play on traditional women's work.

—Jean Dykstra

Read the full article online here.
Artnet News
May 12, 2014
Elizabeth Manus

Some words for Ísland, or Iceland as it's written in Icelandic: hoarfrost, white-hot, névé. And now, some pictures for Ísland, each of them on display at Robert Mann Gallery. Here work by the young Belgian photographer Lavigne, who (according to press materials) drove alone across Iceland for four months, evokes the kind of world that a 19th-century snowshoe-clad loner could love—spare, brightly lit, and miles from cities jammed with multi-story filing cabinets stuffed with people and their belongings. Snowmen, Reykjavik (2011) shows a circle of sun-faceted snow menhirs (clean white) foregrounding a lone soccer goal on a grassy field, a line of blue water and, farther in the distance, ghost-white houses. Phantom, Krossneslaug, Westfjords (2011) has a man just below the surface of a glacial pool, the dapple of light and liquid erasing his facial features. A Kelly green Excavator, On the Road (2011) raises the question of what Iceland needs to clear away in order to develop. Perhaps some precincts of the world deserve their blank spaces, Lavigne suggests, deserve to be left to themselves and their own quiet thoughts—like the faraway-eyed young woman in Hildur in Her Car, Mosfellbaer (2012), or the individuals taking the thermal waters in 2011's Blue Lagoon, Reykjavik. Or artists.

To read the article online, click here.
Les Enfantillages Pittoresques
Musée des Beaux-Arts d'Angers
Angers, France
May 17 - November 16, 2014

The city of Angers is hosting an exhibition at the Musée des Beaux-Arts devoted to artist Laurent Millet, in collaboration with La Galerie Particuliére in Paris, who will host an exhibition of the artist's work in May and June.

In his work as a photographer and visual artist, Laurent Millet (b. 1968) can be said to compose the chapters of an imaginary encyclopaedia, peopled with objects that he constructs in either a natural setting or in his workshop. His assemblages are hybrids of traditional, scientific and architectural objects, as well as works of artists close to Millet's heart.

How can one define his work? Is it sculpture? Drawing? DIY? Installation art? The artist stages 'poetic machinery' which he then photographs, this final image justifying all of the stages preceding it.

In his own way, relying mostly on a certain awkward erudition rather than skill, he attempts to question the images — those he produces, and those, which are latent, waiting to be awakened in the landscape and in the objects. He thus examines their modes of appearance, persistence and practical nature, as well as their uncertain identity.

To continue reading and for more information about the exhibition, click here.
Booth DT 16
May 8-11, 2014
Downtown Armory
New York City

Please join us this Thursday through Saturday at Downtown Fair, where we will be mounting a dynamic solo exhibition of works by Julie Blackmon. The artist's subjects, rich in character and animation, dominate their settings with playful behavior infused with impending disaster. Translucent in their referral to Dutch Renaissance master Jan Steen's paintings, Blackmon's photographs modernize the raucous, familial scenes of the proverbial "Jan Steen household," while also borrowing from the strange interpersonal compositions of French painter Balthus. Our Downtown Fair exhibition will include several sold-out works by Blackmon, as well as her newest images. For more information or to purchase tickets please click here. We hope to see you there!
Paulette Tavormina's photography was featured on the front page of The New York Times Dining section on Wednesday, April 23rd. An elaborate still life of baguettes, braids, and rolls, the image accompanies the Times' Bread Issue. To view the Dining Section online, click here.
The young Belgian photographer Maroesjka Lavigne spent four months driving alone across Iceland. "Yellow House, On the Road" (2011) is one of many pictures dominated by snow. The little yellow house sits doll-like amid a vast expanse of white snow; the white is modulated with hints of blue and melds imperceptibly into a sky that is also white with suggestions of blue. The vehicle in "Autobus, On the Road" (2012) is a red touring bus, but most of its side and windows are plastered white with snow. It is parked in a white field before a small white building whose red roof is also mostly covered with snow. Snow is falling in "Black Church, Búðir" (2012); white streaks are set against a pale-blue sky, and the simple church endures in stoic isolation. The white in "Shrimps, Reykjavík" (2011), however, is a porcelain sink; 11 translucent-and-pink shrimp with black dots for eyes cluster around the stainless-steel drain stopper.

There are three fine portraits: "Hildur in Her Car, Mosfellbaer" (2012), "Magni the Magnificent, Prikið, Reykjavík" (2011) and "Phantom, Krossneslaug, Westfjords" (2011). The first is an attractive young woman with auburn hair wearing a lace-fringed Peter Pan collar; light from an unknown source falls across her eyes. The second is a 17-year-old writer shown in a booth in a literary club, his hair slicked into place, and wearing suspenders and a polka-dot bow tie. The face of the male swimmer in the third is obscured by the rippled surface of the water.

- William Meyers

Read the article online here.
In a photograph that recalls Caspar David Friedrich's Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog, a lone figure overlooks Iceland's Gullfoss waterfall. Unlike Friedrich's wanderer, who towers confidently over the scene beneath him, Belgian photographer Maroesjka Lavigne's subject is nearly indiscernible in the landscape, his black clothing almost completely blanketed in snow.

He's not the only person or man-made object made small by nature in Lavigne's series Ísland, on view at Robert Mann Gallery through May 17. A swimmer floating in a turquoise pool is rendered faceless by Lavigne's flash against the surface of the water. A red bus and a red roof are almost entirely veiled in white. Nature, if not humanity's superior, often seems at least its contemporary, a force with which to be reckoned.

But Lavigne's perspective is not so simplistic. Just as often, we are forced to consider humanity's influence on nature. In one photograph, a smattering of pink shrimp lie fetus-like across a clinically white kitchen sink. In another, taken at Reykjavik's Blue Lagoon, the tops of bodies are dots across the landscape, drifting in a cloud of steam rising from the water. Or is that haze from the industrial facility, just visible in the background, spewing clouds of smoke from a set of chimneys?

Continue reading the article here.
Must-See Booths at the AIPAD Photography Show

The mood was light as the 34th edition of the AIPAD Photography Show opened its doors last night to a buoyant crowd of dealers, collectors, curators, and fans. Photography, a medium that has grown comfortably into its malleable place within the art discussion, certainly attracts a friendly crowd, with dealers popping into each other's booths throughout the evening... Portraiture was alive and well, with some fantastic inclusions from Julie Blackmon, at Robert Mann Gallery, of her seemingly stylized vignettes of nuclear families, and Song Chao, at M97, whose shots of mine workers read as political statements that are visually reminiscent of work by Michael Halsband.

-Julie Baumgardner

Read the full article online here.
Origins Story, Through a Modern Lens
Experimental Strategies at Aipad's Photography Show


The photography world has been ruled in recent years by a fascination with abstraction and experimental processes and techniques. You see this everywhere in the current Association of International Photography Art Dealers show at the Park Avenue Armory. Even Hans P. Kraus Jr., who deals in photographic old masters, is showing — alongside vintage prints by Charles Marville, now featured in a show at the Metropolitan Museum, and Eugène Atget — some 19th-century pencil drawings by John Herschel, an important contributor to early photography...

...Other works that extend the medium in interesting directions include Jennifer Williams's small, sculptural collages made with photographs, at Robert Mann; John Wood's collages and assemblages at Bruce Silverstein; and Wynn Bullock's "Color Light Abstractions" from the '60s at Rick Webster. Although there is plenty of straight photography here, including historical photojournalism at Daniel Blau, it's the drive toward process, abstraction and experimentation that makes this fair feel particularly relevant.

-Martha Schwendener

Read the full article online here.
Maroesjka Lavigne, Once on this Island

"When you take a picture in a beautiful place, you have to realize that nature isn't the background for your photograph," says 24-year-old Belgian photographer Maroesjka Lavigne. "Rather, you are its prop. The only thing added to the scene, after all, is you."

During a four-month excursion to Iceland that began with an internship at The Reykjavik Grapevine, Lavigne became enamored of the country's stark scenery and how its people dealt with the challenges of going about daily life in an environment reigned by vast, inescapable nature. Steering away from typical depictions of Iceland's great mountainscapes and volcanoes, her work seeks instead to deconstruct the auras of intimidation surrounding these overwhelming forms, uncovering what makes Iceland a home to those who live there. The photographs carry a sense of familiarity and nostalgia for Reykjavik and its nearby towns that is marked by an uncanny awareness of our limited time on earth, through side-by-side portrayals of human life and the more lasting, terrestrial features. For Lavigne, nature is unconquerable, and everywhere: a small figure peers contemplatively over a bridge, allowing the falling snow to envelop his image in white, while a suburban street sleeps trustingly beneath an ominous, rust-colored sky. In "Ísland," her first solo show opening at Robert Mann Gallery this Thursday, April 3, Lavigne presents the rare findings of her travels in "moments when color, light and subject merge into the perfect image."

Read the full interview here.
Chip Hooper's eight large-scale photographs of the ocean were assembled here under the title "Surf". These rather kinetic images revealed water caught in motion while also suggesting how quickly our visual metaphors for water can change with painterly shadow plays and expressive gestural effects. Hooper has long drawn inspiration from the sea; his series of photographs capturing the coasts of California and New Zealand take strong visual cues from the landscape photography of Ansel Adams. But in this show, Hooper's documentary impulse went deeper, as seen in extreme close-ups taken over the last ten years that focus on the nature of water in ways that can only be expressed by the camera.

In Surf #1176 (2003), the sea assumes a striated texture, as vertical ripples interspersed with wiry stitches of spray spreads across the surface. Dramatic works, such as this one, were tempered by the presence of a suite of three photographs of feathery, amorphous waters, in white and pale grays that almost appeared to be sketched in charcoal. Though these cloudy images may be less striking visually, they served to make the more charged photos, with their sharp contrasts, that much more pronounced.

Surf #1082 (2003) captures a moment of high drama in a sea of waves: by isolating an instance of water threatening to crash in on itself, Hooper calls attention to water's powerful but ephemeral forms with a sculpture's eye. By contrast, Surf #2154 (2012) stood out: in this photo, the foamy surface is not just an element of the water but a detail of the image itself. Hooper's work is less aligned with that of Adams than with the impulses of the Abstract Expressionists whose work emphasizes pattern and mood.

—Ali Pechman

View the full Chip Hooper: Surf exhibition here.
There's something intangibly eerie about empty museums; when the spaces are under construction (torn-up floors, sculptures draped with cloths, errant ladders) it's even more unsettling. For the last 10 years, Amsterdam's Rijksmuseum has been under construction (it reopened last spring). During that time period, Dutch photographer Wijnanda Deroo visited the space several times a year, documenting the demolition and renovation of the museum's interior spaces in rich chromogenic prints. Especially stirring are her shots of diffusely lit empty walls, hallways and doorways that look like color field paintings.

Read the feature online here.
Art for the Anthropocene Era
By Eleanor Heartney


News from the ecological front has been alarming of late. There was September's report from UN scientists on the acceleration of climate change and the near certainty that these developments are man-made. Then there was the impending arrival of Fukushima radiation on the West Coast, accompanied by half-hearted assurances that "most" of the radiation would be diluted to levels safe for human contact. These reports arrived as New York City prepared to commemorate the first anniversary of the devastating landfall of Superstorm Sandy, reviving memories of other recent damaging "natural" disasters, among them hurricanes Katrina, Wilma and Irene...

...Mary Mattingly looks beyond the kind of immediate problems addressed by [Lillian Ball and Mel Chin] toward what she refers to as the posthuman future, reflecting her conviction that humanity will survive only if we reduce our footprint on Earth. Over the last 13 years she has been engaged in a number of projects that explore the possibility of self-sustaining environments. Her "Wearable Homes" are garments designed to keep the wearer comfortable no matter what the temperature. The 2009 "Waterpod Project," a collaboration with numerous people, was an amphibious home built atop a 30-by-100-foot barge—complete with living quarters, a greenhouse, a windmill and a chicken coop-on which she, three crew members and various guests lived for five months.

Read the complete article online here.
Photo District News
Night (and Day) at the Museum


Ever dreamed of prowling through an art museum when no one else is there? Photographer Wijnanda Deroo was able to explore the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam repeatedly during the years it was closed for extensive renovations, from 2004 until it reopened in April 2013. Built in 1856, the museum, home to "The Night Watch" by Rembrandt and "The Milkmaid" by Vermeer, had undergone many additions in the past. The goal of the renovation was modernize its facilities and restore its floor plan to its architect's original design. Deroo returned several times each year, photographing the progress from demolition to reconstruction. Her images from the project, showing emptied galleries and priceless works of art surrounded by dropcloths, are now on view at Robert Mann Gallery in New York City through March 29. An opening reception will take place February 20.

Throughout her career, Deroo has traveled around the world, photographing interiors. As the gallery says in a statement, "Her images, devoid of people yet full of the vestiges of their presence, are at once intimate and haunting."

Read the article online here.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the representation of Maroesjka Lavigne.

Lavigne, whose work marries a graphic aesthetic with a drive for honesty in representing people and place, is a young Belgian photographer who lives and works in Ghent, Belgium. After graduating with a Masters in Photography from Ghent University in 2012, the artist spent four months driving alone across Iceland to create her Ísland series, which was selected by Foam Magazine as a finalist in the prestigious Foam Talent Call. The series also won a LensCulture New & Emerging Photographers Grand Prize, and was shown at the 2012 Photo Academy Awards and the Unseen Photo Fair in the Netherlands, as well as the 44 Gallery in Bruges, Belgium.

Maroesjka Lavigne: Ísland will open on April 3, 2014.

For additional information about this work, please contact the gallery.
Mary Mattingly's Waterfront Development



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What's the latest trend in New York City real estate? Over the course of the summer and fall of 2013, artist Mary Mattingly constructs and occupies Triple Island (2013), an outdoor sculpture overlooking the East River. Situated in the newly developed Pier 42 public park—a waterfront area flooded by Hurricane Sandy in 2012—the sculpture rests on buoyant 55 gallon drums, which allow it to float in the event of rising sea levels. Mattingly and friends build Triple Island out of a mix of recycled, donated, and custom-made materials. The three main structures—a living space, greenhouse, and community garden—together form a system for living off the grid in the densely-populated Lower East Side. A self-described apocalyptic thinker, Mattingly views the project as an experimental model for an imagined future where environmental degradation and collapsed economies render current ways of living in urban areas untenable.

To continue reading and visit the full site, click here.
Julie Blackmon
Friday, January 24th, 7:30pm
San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall
800 Chestnut Street, San Francisco


About Domestic Vacations: The Dutch proverb "a Jan Steen household" originated in the 17th century and is used today to refer to a home in disarray, full of rowdy children and boisterous family gatherings. The paintings of Steen, along with those of other Dutch and Flemish genre painters, helped inspire this body of work. I am the oldest of nine children and now the mother of three. As Steen's personal narratives of family life depicted nearly 400 yrs. ago, the conflation of art and life is an area I have explored in photographing the everyday life of my family and the lives of my sisters and their families at home. These images are both fictional and auto-biographical, and reflect not only our lives today and as children growing up in a large family, but also move beyond the documentary to explore the fantastic elements of our everyday lives, both imagined and real.

For more details and to continue reading, click here.
Inspired by the richness and variety of the High Line, and its overall effect on the Chelsea neighborhood and the city itself, Jennifer Williams created a series of collages composed of digital photographs of the area that she manually pieced together. Eschewing traditional frames, she decided to install these works, which vary widely in shape and size, in such a way that they seemed to grow out of the gallery's ceiling, floor, and walls.

In fact, the collages often appeared to tumble to life, like so many angular, sculpted creatures. One of them, called 7000 Oaks to Tenth Avenue Square, was so large that it looked like a dinosaur about to take a stroll, while another, Approaching Hudson Yards (both 2013), hung from the ceiling like a plane caught mid-takeoff. Running through all of the works was the path of the elevated park, like the spines of the various creatures that Williams invented. The buildings almost overwhelm the green foliage in the images, much the same way they do in real life.

But as these works make apparent, amenities like the High Line are inevitably accompanied by increased development and higher rents. Williams's exuberant and attractive collages comment cogently on the ambiguous impact of the High Line.

The gallery also included a set of the artist's unrelated collages. Boxes #2 (2012) is particularly sensual, with layers of brown paper, varying in tone, folded and bent and squeezed together. These works beg viewers to touch them and glide their fingers across the surfaces, giving them an opportunity to sense Williams's emotional states.

—Valerie Gladstone
Fred Stein: Fine Cut



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Haaretz Israeli News

BERLIN - The wedding present that Lilo and Fred Stein bought themselves was never left unused: The newly married Jewish couple brought the 35mm Leica camera with them when they left Germany in the fall of 1933. They ostensibly were going on their honeymoon, but in fact were fleeing the Nazis only a few months after Hitler came to power. Read the full article here.

Spiegel Online

A photo session? No thanks! In 1946, Albert Einstein turned down a request by photographer Fred Stein to shoot pictures of him at Princeton. But it wasn't long before Einstein relented, agreeing to a meeting that he insisted should last no longer than 10 minutes. It turned into a two-hour encounter during which they swapped jokes, and which produced an image that has been branded into the collective consciousness, that of the physicist in his mid-sixties with his trademark tussled hair and sad, lonely gaze. Read the full article here.
"We're probably doomed as humans if we don't start thinking in a posthuman way," Mary Mattingly posited during a recent "Art:21" documentary. Her grim assessment, a by-product of years spent independently studying the exploitation of workers and natural resources that propels consumption in the world's affluent areas, is accompanied by ambitious experiments in imagining more sustainable means of subsistence. In the highly inventive tradition of Buckminster Fuller, Mattingly has fabricated futuristic "Wearable Homes"—protective suits equipped to guard against extreme temperatures, flooding, insects and bacteria—and mobile geodesic domes. Several such domes were mounted on the "Waterpod," a retrofitted barge that carried the artist and her crew around New York City's harbor for six months in 2009 as they tried to live self sufficiently on the vessel (growing food, recycling rainwater, etc.).

"House and Universe," Mattingly's third solo show with Robert Mann, reflected the artist's environmental concerns in two sculptures and 15 photographs, many of which document her public projects. The photo Flock (2012), for example, features one of her floating structures. Atop a platform, two geodesic domes covered with white tarps and surrounded by containers of plants are engulfed by an expanse of sky and sea. Continent (2012) shows a barge and rafts subsumed in a murky fog; a sharp edge between the rippling waters and the solid background, among other Photoshopped aspects of the image, reveals the barren surroundings as an aesthetic frame. The unmoored vessel thus emerges as both a symbol of vulnerability and a privileged vantage point in these and several other of the show's photographs, which evince a romantic tendency eclipsed by sheer purpose and will in the artist's mobile environments. Yet, if Mattingly's intentions are resolutely political, her photographs nonetheless evoke the spiritual. Take the serene vision of escape in For a Week Without Speaking (2012), a photograph depicting the artist rowing in quietly rippling waters, her bundled possessions atop wooden shafts, in the autumnal glow of a forested bank.

Mattingly's combination of ecological engagement and otherworldly beauty is reminiscent of much Land art, and she knowingly interpolates herself into this tradition with Filling Double Negative (in collaboration with Greg Lindquist), 2013. Michael Heizer's Double Negative (1969), a vast trench on Nevada's Mormon Mesa, is pictured from its depths with a boulder in the foreground wrapped in a blue-green tarp and twine. Heizer's piece functions as an important reference for the show, in its paradoxical use of emptying to achieve scale.

Mattingly advances reduction as a Sisyphean task. In the 52-by-36-by-36-inch sculpture Terrene (2012), a hanging twine-wrapped ball of domestic sundries—purses, bedside lamps, paperback novels and art magazines—the artist has compressed her belongings into a burden. Rather than push this hodgepodge boulder up a hill, she pulls it across a city sidewalk in Pull (2013) and places it on top of a reclined nude male, seen from behind, for Life of Objects (2013). In the urban outdoors, the mass of intimate possessions seems to expose the shame of private accumulation; indoors, on a naked, anonymous man, it becomes a more visceral strain on individualism.

Accompanying these works, Mattingly created a website, own-it.us, that catalogues each of her possessions, tracing their constituent elements to mining and extraction operations around the world. In this way, she elegantly extends her work from the domestic to the global, proving her show's title a political injunction to understand how each house contributes to the making of our universe.

—Kareem Estefan, December 2013

Read the article online here.


David Vestal passed away this week at home in Bethlehem, Connecticut. Born in Menlo Park, California in 1924, Vestal studied painting at the Art Institute of Chicago before becoming involved in photography in the late 1940s through the Photo League in New York. Rather than working in photographic essays like many of his New York School contemporaries, Vestal captured singular moments of life in the city through his emotive and atmospheric images—a lone figure passing along a snowy sidewalk, a twilight drive over the George Washington Bridge, or the bustling traffic in Flatiron Square at night.

Vestal received two John Simon Guggenheim Fellowships in photography in 1966 and 1973. He wrote extensively for various photography publications, and published two classic books on photographic craft and printing: The Craft of Photography, 1975, and The Art of Black-and-White Enlarging, 1984. A lifelong educator, his illustrious teaching career included positions at Parsons School of Design, the School of Visual Arts, and Pratt Institute, as well as numerous lectures and workshops around the country. His work is included in such notable public collections as the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

Portrait of David Vestal taken by Len Kowitz, 2004.



Click the image to view the section about Julie Blackmon. To see the full original webcast please click here.
Mary Mattingly's personal belongings, lashed together with rope, imagine the fate of society in the wake of environmental destruction. This show, "House and Universe," included two such aggregations: Gyre (2013), a hemisphere of the artist's cast-offs bound to a wagon wheel, and Terrene (2012), which hung from the ceiling like a wrecking ball. The strength of these masses intensified the mood of the 15 photographs situating Mattingly's sculptures in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. In Microsphere (2012), three women nestle inside a geodesic cocoon watching children swim in murky water near houseboats. Packing materials labeled "COSCO" (China's international shipping company" dominate the skyline.

In Life of Objects (2013), a ball of detritus rests on top of a naked, fair-skinned boy who bears the weight of human possessions. Other works seemed straightforwardly documentary. Flock (2012) captures one of several floating domiciles designed and inhabited by the artist from 2011 to 2012. Mattingly takes photographs all over the world, but refuses to divulge their locations, adding to our overall sense of disorientation. Alongside Andrea Zittel, Mel Chin, and other utilitarian art activists, she participates in an expanding forum that proposes alternative solutions for living in a society transformed by floods, was, and economic collapse. A Ruin in Reverse (2013), a sarcophagus-shaped bundle tossed into a freshly dug grave, recalls Ana Mendieta's Silvetas.

The poignancy of Mattingly's environments is their vulnerability. They are imperfect solutions that question humanity's chances for survival in a post-consumer age. Gathering together her own belongings, she asks, "Why did I own them? How did they get into my life? And what's my responsibility?" The success of Mattingly's work rests, perhaps, on whether it actually moves us to action.

- Johanna Ruth Epstein
In an Instant: Photographs by Fred Stein
Libeskind Building, Eric F. Ross Gallery
Jewish Museum, Berlin
November 22, 2013 - March 23, 2014


An instant can make the difference—whether in life or in photography. For the photographer Fred Stein, it was those brief moments that determined his life, both personally and professionally. Fred Stein was born in Dresden in 1909, the son of a rabbi. When the Nazis came to power, the committed socialist was forced to give up his job as a lawyer and leave Germany. Under the pretext of taking a honeymoon trip, he escaped to Paris with his wife Lilo in 1933. There he faced the challenge of building a new livelihood from scratch. Inspired by a Leica 35mm camera—Fred and Lilo Stein's wedding gift to each other—Fred Stein chose photography as his new profession.

The exhibition is Germany's first comprehensive retrospective of Fred Stein's work. With more than 130 black-and-white photos, it presents street views of Paris and New York along with portraits. Personal documents, original prints, and contact sheets offer further glimpses of the photographer's life and work.

Read the full press release here.


Robert Mann Gallery is featured in French magazine L'Oeil de la Photographie as one of the exhibitors not to miss at Paris Photo 2013. This year's program highlights rare vintage prints by Joe Deal and Aaron Siskind, among others, as well as new work by standout contemporary photographers like Julie Blackmon.

Read the complete article in French and English here.
Flock, 2012, the first of fifteen photographs in Mary Mattingly's exhibition "House and Universe," shows two geodesic domes set atop a raft adrift in the ocean. Like Mattingly's Waterpod Project, 2009, and her current Triple Island, 2013, these domes, part of Flock House Project, 2012, have functioned as temporary, self-sufficient shelters in New York's parks and plazas. Variously outfitted with hydroponic gardens, water-filtration systems, and buoys, they are public-art prototypes for the small-scale floating communities that Mattingly predicts will become our collective dystopian norm should global warming and corporate privatization continue unabated. Thus, the photograph doesn't chronicle the Flock House domes' past installations, but instead stitches them into a projected, distinctly Ballardian future.

As art historian (and Artforum contributor) Eva Díaz has noted, Mattingly is one of several artists who have recently resuscitated the geodesic domes patented and popularized by Buckminster Fuller. This new turn in "dome culture," however, jettisons Fuller's oracular ebullience. The aims of Mattingly's shelters instead come closer to those of Krzysztof Wodiczko's Homeless Vehicle, 1988. Wodiczko's souped-up shopping cart was purportedly purely practical, equipped to satisfy the stated needs of New York's homeless population—a bin for collected aluminum cans, an enclosure for secure sleeping, etc.—through the resemblance it bore to a missile on wheels was hardly accidental. Like Homeless Vehicle, Mattingly's prototypes are seductive warnings: charming as single unites, but foreboding when their proliferation is earnestly contemplated. Whereas Fuller's domes radiated technocratic confidence, Mattingly's betray skepticism toward design solutions that accommodate a deleterious status quo without addressing root causes.

In "House and Universe," Mattingly acted convinced that her imagined future and the present day were converging. Can you blame her? In the context of New York alone, consider the ongoing recovery from Hurricane Sandy, the encampment-as-protest of Occupy Wall Street; or even the trendy ubiquity of sustainable living measures, such as home gardens, solar panels, and dry compost. As if to prepare for imminent catastrophe, Mattingly has been divesting herself of personal possessions by bundling her books, clothes, keepsakes, and electronics into boulder-like clumps bound together by twine. Two such overstuffed amalgams, Terrene, 2012, and Gyre, 2013, were presented here as discrete sculptures; in photographs, others appeared in less pristine settings, such as an unidentified shantytown, suggesting a connection between Mattingly's haphazard constructions and the improvised architectures at the outskirts of cities worldwide.

Before parting with her personal items, Mattingly systematically documented them in photographs and 3-D scans, though this component of her project was nowhere in evidence. Overall, "House and Universe" raised anew the question of how the gallery context condenses and filters practices as holistic as Mattingly's (or, say, Andrea Zittel's). Almost to a fault, the photographs bristle with art-historical references: Their square format and centered compositions loosely follow the conventions of Bernd and Hilla Becher's deadpan typologies; titles allude to Robert Smithson and Titian; one photograph was taken in Nevada from the bottom of Michael Heizer's Double Negative, 1969, and another, of an overburdened rowboat disappearing into mist, borrows wholesale from Caspar David Friedrich, The elegant, elegiac tone of Mattingly's "art" photography seems at odds with the scrappy, madcap mood of her urban interventions. Then again, there is a grim site specificity to Mattingly's exhibiting work in Chelsea, a district badly damaged by Sandy. Furthermore, Gyre points out how even art's discursive apparatus contributes to a culture of overproduction and waste. Tucked behind its twine netting are several bulky periodicals bearing on their back covers the Swiss pastorals and red lettering of Bruno Bischofberger advertisements—unmistakably, old issues of Artforum.
The term "High Line Effect" typically refers to the international phenomenon in which global cities, having seen the park's transformation of a previously derelict stretch of train tracks into a thriving public space, seek to recreate its powers of resurrection by building one of their own. The High Line's other effect, when viewed more closely, is its magnetic draw to tourists and developers. Jennifer Williams "The High Line Effect," an installation of photo collages opening at Robert Mann Gallery Thursday, focuses on the latter.

Williams's non-linear (pun intended) approach to collage is uncannily appropriate for the subject matter. Photographs of cranes, construction sites, architecture, and the Standard Hotel are going to radiate from images of the lush tourist-trodden path and spill out of the constraints of the walls and onto the gallery's floors and ceilings. The immersive presentation has the potential to convey what the park's fans may fail to grasp in real life: The High Line is a living thing, a catalyst for what the gallery refers to as "multifaceted and mutating urban change." And it just keeps growing.

See the full article here.
For her show of new photography and sculpture at Robert Mann gallery in Chelsea, Mary Mattingly first created a number of "man made boulders," which were made by amassing her possessions and binding them together with light brown twine. Measuring about five feet in diameter, these boulders consist of clothes, journals, keys, bottles, wires, and other miscellaneous items that Mattingly found kicking around her home. Two of these boulders are on display at the exhibition, as well as fifteen digital photographs in which she explores the push and pull between the destructive excesses of consumer culture and the utopian potential of DIY asceticism. Weaving together themes of sustainability and balance, buoyancy and weight, Mattingly's work provokes a reassessment of our relationship with inanimate objects in a rapidly changing world where survival and destruction, waste and renewal, are the twin poles of orientation.

For instance, in Pull (2013), the artist drags a comically massive boulder down a city sidewalk. It looks like strenuous work, instantly evoking an experience familiar to anyone who has ever schlepped their every belonging from one apartment building to another. The same boulder (or one which looks just like it) also appears in The Life of Objects (2013), where it balances precariously on top of a male nude figure who lies dwarfed beneath it, curled up in the fetal position with his back to the camera. These works prompt us to reconsider the age-old truism that we don't own our possessions so much as they own us. Sometimes the cumulative weight of things threatens to drag us under, as in A Ruin In Reverse (2013), in which a coffin-shaped boulder lies in a freshly dug grave—inviting comparison to Christo's Red Package (1968)—or as in Floating A Boulder (2012), in which a row boat carries a dangerously tall tower of garbage bags while drifting towards an indistinct grey horizon. Floating A Boulder is one of the many photographs in the show with an aquatic theme; another is Microsphere (2012) in which a floating globe populated by three passengers is buoyed by a collection of plastic bottles. Flock (2012) depicts one of Mattingly's "flock houses"; these are self sufficient floating homes that resemble Andrea Zittel's "living units" crossed with Kevin Costner's Waterworld.

Mary Mattingly's forays into water-borne sustainable living serve as a light-hearted counterpoint to the oppressive weight of her man made boulders, although there is a levity to the boulders as well: it must have been cathartic for her to clean out her home and repurpose her clutter as art. Mattingly's work suggests that the accretion of consumer products and man-made waste clogging up the arteries of our planet and our lives can be put to new uses, and that there is hope for us yet.

Read the complete article by David E. Willis here.
In a show of color photographs that touch on consumerism, waste, and the environment, people turn up only here and there, and they're always overwhelmed or absorbed by their bundled-up belongings. Mattingly is seen pulling a huge ball of her own lashed-together stuff (clothes, books, headphones, shampoo) down the sidewalk; two similarly dense accumulations of household goods, held together by twine, occupy the gallery floor. In photographs, other bundles have turned into ad-hoc shelters, gigantic backpacks, or boulder-like masses that look like Christo's rope-bound sculptures. In Mattingly's world, we're all refugees dragging our overstuffed lives around. Through Oct. 19.

Read the article online here.
The digital photo-collages in Mary Mattingly's exhibition "House and Universe" are 2-D representations of the collaborative projects she's worked on for the past few years. Mattingly's Triple Island, a self-sustaining ecosystem installed on a Brooklyn pier through November, and the Flock Houses, portable and adaptable homes, both factor into these recent images, which depict wrapped bundles of material possessions (resting among similarly scaled boulders, or being dragged down a city street) and people inhabiting dome-shaped structures floating in industrial waterways. The frequency of floods, hurricanes, droughts and other natural disasters over the past decade make Mattingly's solutions seem not all that far-fetched.

Read the article online here.
ART IN REVIEW
Mary Mattingly: House and Universe
By Martha Schwendener
September 12, 2013


After exhibiting eco-science-fiction photographs early in her career, Mary Mattingly started experimenting with real-life situations, living on her "Waterpod" project, drifting around New York Harbor in 2009 and more recently in various self-sufficient "Flock Houses." Here, she returns to photography and works that are scruffier than her earlier ones, but more personal and poignant. They're often funny, too — although the underlying message, as with most things eco, is apocalyptic.

For the exhibition, Ms. Mattingly bound up virtually all her possessions, creating what she calls "man-made boulders," which resemble postminimalist sculptures. One photograph finds her pulling a boulder down a city street, while another, "Ruin in Reverse" (2013), is reminiscent of photographs of Ana Mendieta, the Cuban-American performance artist — except here a gravelike trench is filled with a bundle of castoff objects rather than a woman's body.

Art history allusions abound, since Ms. Mattingly's possessions include, unsurprisingly, lots of art books and ephemera. A copy of "Janson's History of Art" can be spotted in "Ruin in Reverse." Another photo fills Michael Heizer's earthwork "Double Negative" (1969-70) in Nevada with a bright blue-green "boulder," also reminiscent of Christo and Jeanne-Claude's wrapped objects.

Photography's recent history is also invoked. Where digital manipulation was embraced in the '80s and then eschewed in the aughts, Ms. Mattingly chooses a third path: her clumsy and obvious Photoshopping looks like an environmental disaster someone was either too arrogant or lazy (or incompetent) to clean up — which works perfectly in this context.
In her current exhibition House and Universe, American visual artist Mary Mattingly combines digital photography with experimental design to explore environmental issues. In an article about the opening in today's New York Times, author Martha Schwendener explains: "Ms. Mattingly bound up virtually all her possessions, creating what she calls 'man-made boulders,' which resemble postminimalist sculptures. One photograph finds her pulling a boulder down a city street, while another, "Ruin in Reverse" (2013), is reminiscent of photographs of Ana Mendieta, the Cuban-American performance artist — except here a gravelike trench is filled with a bundle of castoff objects rather than a woman's body."

To read the entire blog, click here.
Mary Mattingly spoke to Artsy Editorial and Art-Rated about climate change, her life's objects, and the language of photography on the occasion of her opening exhibition House and Universe, currently on view.

Artsy Editorial

Imagine a personal flying machine, equipped with jetpacks, that could collect dew from clouds to supply fresh drinking water to the traveler; or a futuristic, water-based floating city designed to mutate with the tides and serve, at once, as transportation, island, and residence—Mary Mattingly did. At the turn of the millenium, after three consecutive catastrophic floods prompted privatization of water resources, the Brooklyn-based sculptor and photographer took note and started drafting. As so began Mattingly's mission to create imaginative-yet-practical solutions for imminent world change—none, as of yet, which have proven too quixotic to be realized. Mattingly's latest venture, Triple Island, is a scalable, amphibious ecosystem parked at Lower Manhattan's Pier 42, providing regenerative shelter, power, food, and water to a future New York. On the occasion of her public project and a new exhibition of photographs at Robert Mann Gallery, we spoke with Mattingly on nomadic homes (her "Flock Houses"), the post-humanist future, and the issues she carries with her—just like her wearable home—wherever she goes.

Read the full interview here.

Art-Rated

Art-Rated: At a glance your work seems very rooted in the creation of objects and projects aimed at artistically raising awareness (and providing solutions) to issues like sustainable living, overconsumption, mass production and environmentally unaware design. In addition to all that, your practice includes more imaginative and expressive works, usually photomontages that transplant your sculptures into remixed versions of the future. Can you speak to those two areas of your work? Did they develop in tandem or did one lead to the other?

Mary Mattingly: For the past eight years I've been making forms of tools and housing. I make photographs simultaneously that document these tools. Like the photographs, these sculptures are made through collaging materials together. Some aren't functional but allude to different systems of living. Others describe and take part in networked, decentralized ecologies for communal life. I experiment living in and with them, and believe that people really have to experience and live them to understand how they can exist in reality, fictionally, and the places between. Through this process I document these things and their use. I ask, how can we provide for basic needs for every human and non-human? At times, the documents are as abstract as the tools, and propose dystopic futures with ways to work within. They propose and allow for new solutions to develop, but don't solve problems.

Read the full interview here.
I made the journey to Double Negative with the artist Mary Mattingly in a 113-degree heat wave between the third and fourth of July. The fact that our trip coincided with Independence Day underscored a certain Americanness in the work's grand scale and location. We attempted (and failed) to camp at the base of its northern swath. Like my 2011 visit to Robert Smithson's Spiral Jetty in a frigid Utah winter, the unpredictable and circumscribing site-specific weather played a large role in the experience of the work. Approximately an hour and a half northeast of Las Vegas, Double Negative is situated in the crumbling capillary ridges that descend from the east side of Mormon Mesa, which was once the bottom of a prehistoric ocean. With a four-wheel drive Jeep, we made our approach through a segment of steep, winding dirt roads, crested the mesa and were guided with ease to the site by a map application on my smartphone.

Read the full article here.
Mary Mattingly is one of the most self-aware people you'll ever meet. Her work, which consists largely of sculptures and installations created from mass-produced objects she's collected over the years, speaks not only to her creative ability as an artist, but also to her deep sensitivity to the world around her. "My goal is to create these structures of bundled objects so that I'm really faced with everything I rely on and consume," she says. "And it's a lot." Mattingly photographs her sculptures in natural habitats, uniting our world of "things" to that of their organic beginnings. In the spirit of a kind of homecoming, Mattingly hopes to get people thinking about what we're taking from the earth, and how we can use what we already have to our best advantage. Her work presents our possessions through a restrictive lens, showing just how much we'd have to carry if we bundled our objects to our own backs.

Read the full interview here.
Most of these classic black-and-white pictures by the great jazz photographer were taken in the forties and fifties, when Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, Sarah Vaughan, and Charlie Parker (all subjects here) were in their prime. Typically, Leonard catches the singers and musicians up close and mid-performance, sweating and swinging, often in a haze of cigarette smoke. When he pulls back, the scene opens up, and you feel as if you were right there, notably in a scene at the Downbeat Club in 1948, when Ella Fitzgerald's audience included a delighted Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman.

Click here to read this article on The New Yorker's website.
A Democracy of Images: Photographs from the Smithsonian American Art Museum
1st floor West, American Art Museum
Washington, DC
Through January 5, 2014




Featuring work by gallery artist Susan Rankaitis as well as the late Joe Deal, Aaron Siskind, and others, A Democracy of Images celebrates the ways in which the American experience has been molded and captured by photography. Rankaitis' combined media work Marvel (1986) reveals the outermost limits of the medium, while images by Deal, Siskind, Harry Callahan, and Robert Frank take on American landscapes and American characters with a modernist eye.

Landscapes in Passing: Photographs by Steve Fitch, Robbert Flick, and Elaine Mayes
2nd Floor South, American Art Museum
Washington, DC
Through January 20, 2014




Eschewing idealistic vistas or romanced plains, the 48 works in Landscapes in Passing highlight the rapid expansion of civilization into the natural world. Flick's photographs, drawn from his series "Sequential Views" consist of grids of images made in Los Angeles in 1980 as he traversed the streets, stopping at prescribed temporal or geographical intervals. The installation is part of a series that highlights objects from the museum's collection that are rarely on public display.
A soundtrack for the Herman Leonard exhibition at Mann would have to feature "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," not only because so many of the musicians pictured performed and recorded the song, but because smoke is an important element in many of the images. Fats Navarro and Frank Sinatra are both holding cigarettes as they perform. Smoke curls up in front of the saxophones of Gerry Mulligan and Sonny Stitt.

Smoke is also critical in "Lester 'Prez' Young, NYC" (1948); the saxophonist himself is not in the picture, but is instead represented by the pork pie hat with which he was synonymous. The hat hangs on the opened cover of his sax case; next to it is an empty Coke bottle with a lit cigarette balanced on its rim. The lighting on the hat emphasizes its regular oval shape, which contrasts with the irregular curling of the cigarette smoke. The picture is simultaneously simple and complex, not unlike Young's playing.

Herman Leonard (1923-2010) opened a studio in Greenwich Village in 1949, when it was a center of live jazz, and he made a specialty of photographing jazz musicians. All the players included in this show are of continuing interest: Louis Armstrong, Chet Baker, Ray Brown, Nat King Cole, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, Dinah Washington and more. A young Sarah Vaughan radiates melody as she sings at Birdland in 1949, and see Duke Ellington's enraptured smile as he listens to Ella Fitzgerald at the Downbeat Club in 1948.

Click here to read this article on The Wall Street Journal's website.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the representation of Jennifer Williams.

Williams' work refutes traditional classifications in its bold challenge to two-dimensionality through constructed illusion. Her photographic installations radically rupture the square frame and surface plane, bursting out in irrepressible radial fans on gallery walls or pouring down madly onto the floor.

Montaging images of such apparent mundanity as buildings, ladders, and garbage collected and photographed during walks through the city, Williams forges a sense of place. For the artist, the camera is not a vehicle of truth. Instead of attempting to capture an image as a static record, she makes work at the intersection of photography, sculpture, and collage to create nonlinear urban narratives of space and experience.

Williams received her BFA from Cooper Union and her MFA from Goldsmiths College in London. Her work has been widely exhibited throughout the country, and honors include the A.I.R. Gallery Fellowship and the NARS Foundation International Artist Residency, as well as the 2008 Juror's Grand Prize at the 4th Annual Alternative Processes show. She lives and works in New York City.

Jennifer Williams' first solo show at the gallery will open this October. For additional information about this work, please contact the gallery.
Gallery artist Mary Mattingly was one of seven New York-based artists recently added to the roster of the Art 21 documentary series New York Close Up. The program focuses on a culturally and creatively diverse group of artists in the first decade of their careers, following them through residencies and exhibitions and into their homes and studios to explore what it means to live and work in the New York City. The gallery will be exhibiting Mattingly's new work, which combines photography with environmental activism and large-scale sculptural projects, early this fall.

Read the article here.
The New York Times reviews VARIOUS SMALL BOOKS: Referencing Various Small Books by Ed Ruscha, edited by Jeff Brouws, Wendy Burton and Hermann Zschiegner.

The New York Times reviews VARIOUS SMALL BOOKS in the Sunday Book Review. The publication, an homage to the series-based work of Ed Ruscha, includes photography by gallery artists Jeff Brouws and Robbert Flick. It is also is co-edited by Brouws, who cites Ruscha as a long-time influence.

Read the article online here.
According to the artist Richard Finkelstein, diorama building brings with it certain hazards. Aside from the potential disasters that can come with those tiny jars of Testor's hobby paint, the major time-wastage involved in trolling online offerings of Preiser and Arttista miniature figures, and the brain-twisting specifics of scales and gauges, there's a track record, if you will, of going off the deep end into an alternate, Lilliputian universe, one dominated, Finkelstein says, by "demented model-train addicts."

But Finkelstein, a former trial lawyer, has maintained a firm grip on his rationality, and his striking photographic images—of elaborately constructed tableaux that ingeniously incorporate ready-made elements you might find at a hobby shop—hum with precision, not to mention the kind of luscious, slightly bruised palette you might find in an Edward Hopper painting. His debut show at New York's Robert Mann Gallery, "A Bunch of Lonesome Heroes" (May 16-June 29), comprises a dozen or so photographs of these tiny worlds, some printed at colossal size. Each one—whether of a solitary figure throwing an impossibly long shadow on a sidewalk or of an intricately brocaded interior—is like a still from half-remembered movie, and their unabashed artificiality never fails to suggest something achingly real.

Read the article and view the slideshow online here.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce that artist Mary Mattingly's Wetland project has recently received a grant from the Knight Foundation, an organization dedicated to environmental conservation and to fostering community art projects. In 2009, Mattingly designed and engineered a 3,000 sq. ft. barge-like structure, The Waterpod Project, in order to explore issues of global environmental politics in the current postindustrial age while investigating the efficacy of a self-sustaining mobile community. Her on-going projects serve as part of a larger initiative on behalf of the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs called smARTpower, which seeks to engage youths by creating a broader cultural and environmental awareness through its unique projects. To honor the program's achievements, the Bronx Museum of the Arts is hosting an upcoming celebration on Friday, May 3rd showcasing documentary films which track 15 artists in 18 countries around the world including Mattingly herself. On the heels of this tremendous accolade, the gallery will be exhibiting new works by Mary Mattingly this coming Fall.
As both a teacher and a photographer, Watkins (1884-1969) was a key, if little known, figure in photography's transition, in the early twentieth century, from painterly pictorialism to a tougher, sleeker modernism. This excellent overview of her career, which petered out in the mid-nineteen- thirties, includes portraits, landscapes, and two terrific female nudes. But Watkins's still-lifes, a number of which were made as advertisements, are her most distinctive work. Whether her subjects are poppies, gourds, glassware, or dishes in a sink, she frames them with striking clarity and warmth, casting a fond and thoroughly engaging eye on ordinary domesticity. Through May 11.

Read the review online here.
This is a strange tale: Margaret Watkins, born in Canada in 1884, by 1920 was a full-time instructor at the Clarence H. White School of Photography in New York. Besides teaching such talented photographers as Doris Ulmann, Ralph Steiner and Paul Outerbridge, Ms. Watkins was a successful photographer who had commercial assignments from Macy's and J. Walter Thompson, a portfolio published in Vanity Fair and was recognized as a leader in the movement from soft- focus Pictorialism to a modernist idiom. Then in 1929, she went to Glasgow, Scotland, to care for two sick relatives and never came back; her career was over. She died in obscurity in 1969 and it was only because of the tenacity of a neighbor to whom she left a trunk of prints that her reputation has revived. The National Gallery of Canada had a retrospective exhibition in 2012 with an accompanying catalog.

Mann is showing 20 of her pictures and 10 by her students. Almost all of hers are platinum/ palladium prints, including a 1925 portrait of composer Sergei Rachmaninov and a 1919 self- portrait that shows a certain hauteur and an elegant neck. There are nudes in the Clarence White mode, and wonderful still-lifes. "The Kitchen Sink" (1919) is a fine example of modernism with its emphasis on simple shapes: a milk bottle, a cup, a creamer, a bowl, a faucet, a teakettle spout, and their shadows on the sink's white enamel.

Read the review online here.
We look forward to seeing you at booth 214 at the AIPAD Photography Show from April 4 - 7 at the Park Avenue Armory located at Park Avenue and 67th Street. The gallery will present new works by many of our contemporary artists including Julie Blackmon, Richard Finkelstein, and Mary Mattingly all of whose colorful compositions delicately balance the whimsical with the artful.

Robert Mann Gallery is especially pleased to present work by seminal 1970s photographer Mike Mandel. On display at AIPAD will be Mandel's elegantly crafted People in Cars which provides a humorous and honest documentary glimpse into the ubiquity of California car culture, and the ordinary individuals that comprise it.

In addition, alongside the work of our contemporary artists will be a well curated selection of vintage works by several modern masters including works by Harry Callahan, Fred Stein, Aaron Siskind, and David Vestal to name a few.

Our display will also include photographs by artist Margaret Watkins whose work contributed heavily to the pivotal shift from Pictorialism to Modernism in the United States during the 1920s. Through her compositions, Watkins draws our attention to the beauty inherent in everyday objects. A larger selection of her work can be viewed in the gallery's current exhibition Margaret Watkins: Domestic Symphony up through May 11.

We invite you to attend the opening night gala to benefit inMotion, an organization dedicated to helping low-income women obtain legal services. For more information or to purchase tickets please click here.

We look forward to seeing you at AIPAD!
Canadian born photographer Margaret Watkins — a vanguard artist whose work bridged the gap between Pictorialist to Modernist Photography in the United States during the 1920s — will be honored with a postage stamp depicting one of her iconic works, The Kitchen Sink, 1919, which will be issued by Canada's Post on Friday, March 22nd.

Read the article online here.
This week Artnet is celebrating female artists who have made a mark on their craft. From photography to paintings and prints, these artists explore the detail in their surroundings, and play with pattern, color, and technique to create inspiring works of art. In New York, Robert Mann Gallery presents a series of images by Margaret Watkins (Canadian, 1884-1969), an early talent in the study of photography.

Read the article online here.
The recent publication "Various Small Books" from MIT Press features text by former Robert Mann Gallery employee Phil Taylor. The book, which pays homage to the photo-conceptualist artist book pioneered by Ed Ruscha in the 1960s, was also co-edited by gallery artist Jeff Brouws, whose two portfolios, Twentysix Abandoned Gasoline Stations and Twentynine Palms, appear in the current Gagosian Gallery exhibition Ed Ruscha: Books & Co. through April 27th.
The artist constructs and photographs still-life arrangements inspired by such art-historical precedents as paintings by Francisco de Zurbarán and Giovanna Garzoni. Fruits, vegetables, and flowers spill from their containers in an almost obscene display of abundance; many of them are overripe, splitting open, or bruised; ladybugs, butterflies, and bees hover. In two of the more over-the-top images, goldfish have escaped small bowls, landing on a bare wooden table with a spray of tiny droplets. Everything seems poised between voluptuousness and rot, at once gorgeous and doomed. Through March 9.
A Feast for Eyes

Paulette Tavormina, a photographer whose works depict food in the style of old-master, still-life paintings, will have a show starting Thursday at Robert Mann Gallery, 525 West 26th Street, (212) 989-7600. The exhibit will be on display through March 9.

By Florence Fabricant
Elaborately staged, frankly artificial photography has fallen out of fashion, but Blackmon is still having fun with the genre. Her antic, anecdotal tableaux take realism as a jumping-off point for various flights of fancy. Several pictures quote paintings, notably Balthus's dreamlike streetscapes, with their oddly isolated characters. One scenario takes place at a book club (its leggy members are reading "Fifty Shades of Grey"), but most revolve around large, unattended groups of children. In the most arresting of these, five kids and two toddlers stand on a dark lawn, basking in the glow of a small fire like fairy-tale figures in a Maxfield Parrish painting.

Read the article online here.
The CONTEXT Art Miami Pavilion
Midtown | Wynwood Arts District
3201 NE 1st Avenue
Miami, FL 33137


Robert Mann Gallery will be exhibiting at Context Art Miami 2012, please join us at booth D44.

We will present a selection of contemporary color photographs by Julie Blackmon, Jeff Brouws, Richard Finkelstein, Mary Mattingly, Richard Misrach and Jörn Vanhöfen.

Julie Blackmon, known for her surreal imagery of chaotic familial life, has most recently found inspiration from Balthus, the French modernist painter and produced six new images which will be on display at our booth. Highlights of our exhibition will also include a dynamic installation of work by Jeff Brouws.

Hours:

VIP Preview: Tuesday December 4, 5:30pm-10pm
Wednesday, December 5, 11am-7pm
Thursday, December 6, 11am-7pm
Friday, December 7, 11am-9pm
Saturday, December 8, 11am-7pm
Sunday, December 9, 11am-6pm

For more information about CONTEXT Art Miami, click here.
ABOUT THE COVER by Lyle Rexer

Pictures have antecedents; they bear in their form and content ghostly genealogies. The more we see, the more we see precedent. There is a pleasure in that, and anxiety, for history is an imaginative act. Each new image creates the past. For example, in the cover image by Julie Blackmon, Olive and Market St., we can make out a host of relatives. The near-empty street and the strange young-old figure turned away from the viewer reminds us of the famous painting by the surrealist Balthus, Le Passage du Commerce Saint Andre (1952), and its precursor, The Street (1933). Circuslike and perverse, they are a child's vision invaded by anxiety and desire. What inspired this image? Perhaps that earlier act of street theater by Kertész, Meudon (1928), with a train flying through the air, a mysterious top-hatted man carrying a wrapped painting up the street of a run-down neighborhood, while dark gentlemen linger in the distance. The photographic frame ruptures reality and frees this view to begin an enigmatic life of its own.

To continue reading, click here.
Robert Mann Gallery is exhibiting at the Grand Palais for Paris Photo, taking place November 15 - 18. The gallery will present work by dynamic contemporary artists along with a selection of vintage masterpieces. Our booth will feature new photographs by Julie Blackmon, and we are pleased to debut new gallery artist Rick Finkelstein's work for the first time in Paris. For more information about Paris Photo, click here.
We are pleased to announce representation of Paulette Tavormina.

Tavormina is known for her lavish still life photographs that recall the exquisite detail of seventeenth century Old Master paintings - drawing inspiration from artists including Francisco de Zurbaran, Adriaen Coorte and Giovanna Garzoni to name a few.

An avid collector of objects such as butterflies and insects, shells, dried flowers, dishes and glasses, the sourcing of props is a crucial part of her process. Each object evokes the memory of the place it was discovered - fresh produce from a New York City farmer's market, horseshoe crabs tossed ashore in Nantucket, ladybugs found at a taxidermy shop in Paris. Not only do these objects look to the art historical roots of the genre of the still life, but their meaning is often multi-layered, a fig perhaps referring to the artist's own Sicilian heritage.

Largely self-taught, Tavormina's mastery of the technique is no small feat - her "sets" can take anywhere between three days to a week to perfect. The resulting prints are remarkably delicate and soft in appearance. This beautiful work seems to straddle both 21st century technology and 17th century Old Master influences.

Tavormina has been exhibited internationally and was the 2010 Winner of the Grand Prix at the International Culinaire Photography Festival in Paris. Her work has been featured in several publications including The New York Times, The Boston Globe, L'Express, Martha Stewart Living and Photo Technique magazine. She lives and works in New York City.

Paulette Tavormina's first solo show at Robert Mann Gallery will open on January 17, 2013.
EPIC JOURNEYS AND THE SLEEP OF TWILIGHT

This exhibition of work from Richard Misrach's first 25 years as a photographer gives New Yorkers a rare opportunity: Robert Mann has up a 20-by-24-inch chromogenic dye coupler print of "Swamp and Pipeline, Geismar, Louisiana" (1998) at the same time the Aperture Gallery a block away has up a print of the same negative that is 60 inches by 76 1/2 inches, almost 10 times as large. The picture exemplifies Mr. Misrach's masterly handling of color; the swamp water is a delicate gray-green, the leafless tree trunks are varying shades of gray, the sky a very pale gray, and the pipeline that intrudes on nature with its straight line also intrudes on nature's color scheme with its rust-brown. Which print is the more effective? I invite the philosophers who take advantage of this opportunity to post comments on their choice.

Included at Mann are four prints using the rare split-tone technique that Mr. Misrach (b. 1949) experimented with in the mid-1970s, but the 15 vintage color prints are the main attraction. "Desert Fire #249" (1985), with its beautiful, but insidious, line of flame zigzagging across an immense area; "Danny Boy, Bonneville Salt Flats" (1992), with what appears to be a jet-propelled motorcycle patiently waiting on the white plain, majestic mountains in the distance; the beautiful "Battleground Point #22" (1999), with its sculptured heap of golden sand and sky of variegated blues reflected symmetrically in a placid lake: These are the classic works with which Mr. Misrach established his reputation.

By William Meyers
Margaret Watkins: Domestic Symphonies
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
October 5, 2012 - January 6, 2013


As the exclusive representative of the Margaret Watkins Estate, Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the first major retrospective exhibition of the artist's work at the National Gallery of Canada.

Starting this Friday, October 5, the National Gallery of Canada (NGC) will unveil the first retrospective exhibition of the work of Canadian photographer, Margaret Watkins. Watkins gained a reputation as both a photographic artist in the world of art and advertising during the 1920s as well as an extremely influential instructor at the Clarence H. White School of Photography. The exhibition, titled Margaret Watkins: Domestic Symphonies, will run until January 6, 2013, and is comprised of 108 works created between 1914 and 1937, seven of which are part of the NGC's collection.

Robert Mann Gallery will also host a solo exhibition of Watkins' work in the Spring of 2013. Please check back for dates. For more information, click here.
"America in View: Landscape Photography 1865 to Now"
Through January 13, 2013
Rhode Island School of Design Museum of Art
Providence, RI


A broad panorama of our country's topographies and correlating narratives, America in View reveals a nation's ambitions and failings, beauty and loss, politics and personal stories through about 150 photographs spanning nearly 150 years.

Ranging from 19th-century albumen prints documenting the pristine drama of the Western landscape to contemporary digital images that construct newly imagined visions of post-industrial America — the show is drawn primarily from the Museum's collection. It features objects new to the collection, including major gifts from the late landscape photographer Joe Deal (Provost and Professor, Rhode Island School of Design) and his widow, Betsy Ruppa, as well as gifts from friends and colleagues in Deal's honor.

For more information, please click here.
"You probably made dioramas back in elementary school, but we guarantee you that even the ones your parents secretly made for you weren't as evocative as Rick Finkelstein's. A former trial lawyer who now builds detailed, psychologically rich scenes in miniature and takes dramatically lit photographs of his creations, Finkelstein observes that his two careers have something in common: "A criminal trial lawyer does two things," he writes on his website. "He tells stories. And he also frames a case, decides what is included and excluded. He crops the story to only include certain information which does not reveal the whole truth. So too with photographs. They tell a piece of a story and exclude much other information which can only be imagined."

This philosophy is apparent in the images Finkelstein creates. One shows a man and a woman, mostly hidden in dark shadows, meeting under a trio of mismatched Greek columns. In another, a large woman looks in the mirror and sees a lingerie model staring back at her. It's left to us to determine whether this is truly the way she regards herself, or if what we're supposed to see is the pressure exerted on her to look like that. Click through to see some of our favorite photographs by Finkelstein, who we discovered via Faith is Torment, and visit his website or gallery for more. of his work."

To see the original article by Judy Berman, click here.
Inaugurating the gallery's third space: 20 photographs from Richard Misrach's lifelong series "The Desert Cantos." The earliest works are flash photos from the 1970s. "Outdoor Dining" is a 1992 print taken at the Bonneville Salt Flats. See the original listing here.
The Robert Mann Gallery in New York City recently moved to a new location and to inaugurate the space, they are hanging a retrospective of Richard Misrach's landscape and fine-art photography. The exhibition spans the first 25 years of the photographer's career and includes his seminal work "The Desert Cantos." According to the gallery, "Richard Misrach: The Desert Cantos" traces the artistic development of the photographer and starts "with the luscious split-toned works realized with a flash shot into desert night scenes. Eerie and magnificent, these works introduce many of the themes that would occupy Misrach in the years to come: staging the condition of aesthetic beauty of the natural world as mediated by human intervention in the landscape — in this case the photographer's own invasive flash." The exhibition runs through October 27, 2012.

Click here to see the original post.
smARTpowerSM in the Philippines launched with Mary Mattingly

smARTpowerSM builds on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's vision of "smart power" diplomacy, which embraces the use of a full range of diplomatic tools — in this case the visual arts — to bring people together and foster greater understanding. The smARTpower initiative is an integral part of the United States' people-to-people diplomacy efforts that engage people, especially underserved youth, and create opportunities for dialogue that build a foundation for greater understanding among people of all cultures, communities, and countries. smARTpowersm is an initiative of the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, administered by the Bronx Museum of the Arts, with additional support from the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation; and Lori Schiff Chemla and ALTOUR.

smARTpowerSM is sending fifteen American artists abroad to work with local artists and young people around the world to create community-based art projects. Selected artists will design and develop programs in cooperation with local arts organizations in host countries including China, Ecuador, Egypt, Ghana, India, Kosovo, Lebanon, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and Venezuela. Green Papaya Art Projects has been appointed local partner organization in the Philippines.

Mary Mattingly
SELECTED ARTIST FOR THE PHILIPPINES


Mary Mattingly has been selected to take up a fellowship in Manila from September to October 2012. Mattingly's work addresses nomadic themes within current and future global environmental and political conditions, focusing on the interdependence of communities facing challenging political and climatic conditions. Mary Mattingly has been exhibiting since 2000, and is the recipient of several awards. During the summer of 2009, she led a group of artists, builders, civic activists, scientists, and marine engineers in the creation of the Waterpod Project, a mobile, sculptural, autonomous habitat and public space built on a 3,000-square-foot barge. The Waterpod Project was designed to be an experimental platform for assessing the efficacy of onboard living systems, as well as to provide a public space for conversation and questioning the status quo concerning energy, water, food, and shelter. Over 200,000 people visited the Waterpod and participated in programs ranging from tours to classes, tutorials, music, and meet-ups. Green Papaya Art Projects has organized a smARTpower Program Team composed of Lian Ladia, Merv Espina and Sidd Perez to help Mary realize her project and ensure a successful implementation of the program in Manila.

For more information, click here.
Hailed as one of the most anticipated Fall 2012 shows in New York, Richard Misrach: The Desert Cantos is on view through Saturday, October 27th.

(ARTINFO)
(DNAinfo)
ROBERT MANN GALLERY INVITES YOU TO JOIN US
AT OUR NEW LOCATION FOR THE EXHIBITION

Richard Misrach: The Desert Cantos
September 13 — October 27, 2012
Reception: Thursday, September 13 (6-8pm)


Inaugurating our newest gallery space, Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to simultaneously celebrate our history by launching the exhibition program with an exemplary collection of photographs by Richard Misrach. Spanning the first 25 years of Misrach's career, the exhibition will offer a rare opportunity to track the artistic development of one of the most significant living American photographers. The chronology of the exhibition begins with the luscious split-toned works realized with a flash shot into desert night scenes. Eerie and magnificent, these works introduce many of the themes that would occupy Misrach in the years to come: staging the condition of aesthetic beauty of the natural world as mediated by human intervention in the landscape — in this case the photographer's own invasive flash. The sublime nature of the damage wrought on the landscape by man-made disasters forms the central theme of his Desert Cantos series. These concerns can be further traced through the Playboy series, Battleground Point, and the dramatic views from Misrach's porch tracking meteorological conditions around San Francisco Bay's Golden Gate.

MORE RICHARD MISRACH EVENTS IN NEW YORK

On view at the Aperture Gallery
Petrochemical America: Project Room / Photographs by Richard Misrach
Throughlines by Kate Orff/ SCAPE
Through October 6, 2012

Lecture and Book Signing
Thursday, September 20, 6:30 pm
Theater 3 (The Celeste Bartos Theater)
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
RSVP REQUIRED
Contact events@aperture.org for more information.

Reception, Exhibition Walkthrough and Book Signing with Richard Misrach and Kate Orff
Friday, September 21, 6-8pm
Aperture Gallery and Bookstore, New York
FREE
For more information, please click here.
"Timeless"
September 7 - September 21, 2012
Center for Alternative Photography
New York, NY


As part of the Holga 30th Anniversary Exhibitions, the Center for Alternative Photography presents "Timeless" featuring work by Michael Kenna. For more information, please click here.
The nine dramatic and unsettling photographs here portrayed large crumbling spaces that could be considered ironic landscapes. Mountains, beaches, a prison — all scarred by decay and the speed of modern life. A stone balcony frames what at first looks like a romantic mountain view, but, on closer view, reveals heavy machinery removing Carrara marble from the mountain. Elsewhere, a graveyard of burned trucks and tires glows in a misty pink light; in South Africa, dead tree trunks dot a sandy beach and stretch into the water, suggesting a long-ago disaster. Part of a larger series, these images all seemed to stand in for vaster, unnamed tragedies.

Several photos featured the curving arcs of cement expressways shooting through the frame. Zurich #367 (2011) shows a pink house tucked neatly beneath an overpass, a wisp of smoke coming from the chimney as in a scene from a fairy tale. Another building is hunched under a freeway in Duisburg #111 (2009). In Gotthard #2754 (2010), a loop of road seems to float above the green valleys and foothills of the distant Alps. At odds with their surroundings, these roads suggest contrasting ways of life.

The scale and subject of Vanhöfen's works readily call to mind Andreas Gursky's images of industry and commerce, but the comparison between the German photographers only goes so far. Gursky digitally removes what he deems unessential. By contrast, Vanhöfen includes it all. His photo of the Chicago Stock Exchange shows a whole universe — there are traders in a tight mass of action near the center of the photo, while below them, others nap at their desks amid a sea of papers and the occasional Cubs banner. Prices for lean hogs and live cattle scroll above them. Vanhöfen lets the messy world speak for itself.

— Rebecca Robertson
Mary Mattingly's Flock House Project roams New York this Summer

The Flock House Project is a group of adaptable ecosystems that will migrate through New York City's five boroughs and beyond as part of an investigation of sustainability, collaboration, and the city of the future. Inhabited by resident artists tasked with moving their practice to the community harboring the Flock House while stress testing the collaboratively-built designs, each modular structure is fabricated using leftover materials from New York's waste stream such as wood shipping crates, bisected 55-gallon drums and spliced metal ladders. These structures promote wider adoption of natural systems including rainwater capture, small-scale urban agriculture, flexible solar, wind band, and human-owered energy technologies.

Expanding upon data collected from previous Waterpod Project (a self-sustaining barge that toured the NYC Waterways in 2009), the food, water, and power systems function both autonomously and parasitically off of surrounding waste. Dependent on local community relationships to maintain, share, and operate, the Flock House project is a prototype for possible foundations for the future living, asking the question: What if mobile, self-sufficient living units were the building blocks for future cities? Check for updates at: www.flockhouse.org

Mary Mattingly and smARTpower (in partnership with Green Papaya Art Projects)

Mary Mattingly has been selected by the US Department of State to take up residency in Manila from September to October 2012. smARTpower is a new initiative that will send 15 American artists and collaborative artist teams to 15 countries worldwide to engage in people-to-people diplomacy through the visual arts.

smARTpower builds on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's vision of "smart power diplomacy," which embraces the use of a full range of diplomatic tools - in this case the visual arts - to bring people together and foster greater understanding.

For up to 45 days during the next year, the following American artists will travel to all corners of the globe, where they will partner with local arts organizations to engage with underserved youth and create community-based projects. The first smARTpower artist, Kabir Carter of Brooklyn, New York, will depart October 24 for Istanbul, Turkey. Other artists will follow throughout 2012 with travel to China, Ecuador, Egypt, Ghana, India, Kenya, Kosovo, Lebanon, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and Venezuela. For more information click here.
Robert Mann Gallery is delighted to announce our move to a new location this Fall: 525 West 26th Street.

We will be open by appointment in July and August.
The New Yorker reviews recent gallery exhibition Fred Stein: Paris / New York in the June 18th Issue.

The lawyer-turned-photographer—who fled Germany in the nineteen-thirties, moving first to Paris and then to New York—was easily overshadowed by such contemporaries as André Kertész, Lisette Model, and Helen Levitt. But this selection of vintage black-and-white prints makes a strong case for reëvaluating the work, much of which could be mistaken for that of his more famous peers. Judging by this group, street life was Stein's prime focus, and his photographs of pedestrian and vehicular traffic are deftly composed. Individuals—a shoeshine boy slumped in his chair, an amorous couple at Coney Island, a young woman dozing on the grass in Paris—are even more carefully and tellingly observed. Through June 30.

To read the original article, click here.
The Association of International Photography Art Dealers (AIPAD)
reviews Fred Stein: Paris / New York

Virtuoso of the Leica is an Unsung Master

Somehow the legacy of this photographer is only now on its way to gaining the true recognition it deserves. We need not look at many works to realize their quality, their belonging to the time and place of the artist and his contemporaries. Perhaps it was the era and Stein's need to keep on the move, to reinvent and rebuild himself that worked against his earlier establishment. Born in Dresden, Stein studied law but the Nazi Government denied him admission to the bar. Stein and his wife left Germany in 1933 claiming to be on honeymoon. They traveled to Paris where Stein began taking photographs with the Leica they bought as a joint wedding present.

In Paris Stein allied himself with a circle of artists and intellectuals. He was among the first to adopt the agile hand-held camera and used it to work with spontaneity to capture the drama, the elegance, the grit of the every day. The rhythm in his work is dynamic almost architectural, the framing structured but spontaneous. Stein seemed to have worked with an easy airiness and his sense of "the moment" too is well but gracefully thought. Life was again interrupted in 1939 when Germany declared war on France. Stein was put in an internment camp, but managed to escape and reunite with his wife and infant daughter in the south and obtain assistance from the International Rescue Committee. The family left France for New York in 1941.

Finding himself in a new, vibrant cultural hub Stein again set root and formed relationships with cultural, scientific, and political leaders. Stein continued to work to capture the city life, and also opened a studio business. The portrait enhanced his knowledge of light and tone that enhanced the quality of his more spontaneous personal work. Many personalities of his time were subjects of his portraits, including Albert Einstein, Georgia O'Keefe, and Marc Chagal (all on view). The anonymous are seen with equal honor and dignity, even in heavier themed frames of folks down on their luck or hungry-looking children. Stein's work was published in a slew of magazines, newspapers, and texts of his time; his relevance slow in coming to all circles, will certainly be remembered by all who see his work.

To read the original article click here.
Holly Andres: The Fall of Spring Hill is featured in the June 2012 Issue of Modern Painters magazine.

Read an excerpt from the article, "Legends of the Fall" here:

Younger than Wall and Graham, Holly Andres is untroubled by the straight- versus-staged photo wars. Her pictures are pure contrivances, stocked with thrift- shop clothing and splashed with chemically ripened colors that lie somewhere between the hues of old home movies and a bag of Skittles. If Wall's famously costly and time-consuming recreations have been likened to a filmmaker's production, Andres is his indie counterpart. Her series "The Fall of Spring Hill" shares the subject of the childhood accident with Boy Falls from Tree, though she's more forthcoming about offering her own tot's-eye view of the event.

Thirteen photographs toggle between a group of young mothers preparing a church picnic in a 1970s kitchen and their children at play in the fields of the Lord. Parallel action and portents tell the story: A fearsomely long knife slices through a ripe red watermelon; crimson droplets have spilled around a bowl of punch, as ominous as the wine splashed on a bride's white dress. The title The Fall is awarded to a photograph of the kitchen, where a coffee cup has crashed to the floor. Of the fall, Andres, like Graham, shows us only the before (a towheaded boy holding a caterpillar leans down from a weathered wooden structure) and the after (a limp little body is carried down Spring Hill in a somber procession of children).

Armed with baseball bats and axes, like a mob in pursuit of Frankenstein's monster or Edward Scissorhands, the mothers reduce the offending structure to a heap of planks over which the church steeple rises in placid triumph.

For previous series, Andres staged tableaux that examined the inner lives of girls, their conflicting desires for adventure and security, their sense of danger's proximity to the domestic. In "The Fall of Spring Hill," it's the boy who falls, but a girl who remembers. Was young Holly even looking when he fell? Memory, like photography, can be vivid yet selective, and subject to manipulation. For Andres, the fall is not a solitary boy's reckoning with gravity but a communal trauma resolved with the assertion of a preternaturally, even comically protective matriarchy. Wall staged a fall as a demonstration of a law of physics. Andres declined to stage one to signal that no rules govern remembrance.

by Marcia E. Vetroq
Julie Blackmon: "Tales from Home"
Through September 2, 2012
Everson Museum of Art
Syracuse, NY


Authentic and dysfunctional, Julie Blackmon's photographs of family life strike a resonating chord in both children and adult viewers. Boys and girls run free in the backyard or the living room among scattered toys while preoccupied grown-ups hover on the edges. Inspired by humorous seventeenth century Dutch paintings and her own childhood as the eldest of nine, Blackmon digitally reconstructs scenes of family life with humor and an eye for the underlying chaos. The exhibition contains selections from her past seriesDomestic Vacations along with photographs from her latest body of work.

For more information, click here.
The career of Fred Stein (1909-1967) illustrates how easily a talented photographer can be written out of history. Born in Dresden, Germany, Mr. Stein belonged to the generation that documented trouble in Europe with hand-held cameras (in his case, a Leica) during the 1930s. Fleeing Leipzig for Paris in 1933 and France for the U.S. in 1941, he found a home with the Photo League in New York and established a successful studio practice here, specializing in portraiture.

This selection of work suggests he must have gone to school in Paris on the photographs of Henri Cartier-Bresson and André Kertész. Like them, he identified with those on the economic margins of the city. His pictures of the dispossessed — a man asleep on a bench, another dozing on a loading dock, a bum with wine bottles stuffed in his sagging pockets, an exhausted shoeshine boy — are standouts here.

Celebrity portraits done in New York of Marc Chagall, Albert Einstein and Georgia O'Keeffe are more prosaic. What's unclear from this keyhole view of Mr. Stein's oeuvre is whether his impressive street photographs were more the exception or the rule.

— By Richard Woodward
In the June 4th Issue of TIME, Anita Hamilton profiles artsy.net, the new art search engine site that uses the same technology as Pandora's Music Genome. 'Amber, 2006' by Holly Andres is recommended along with works by Cindy Sherman, Claude Monet and others.
"Behind the Wheel"
Through August 12th, 2012
Santa Barbara CA


"Behind the Wheel", currently on view at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art features work by gallery artists Jeff Brouws, Joe Deal and Robbert Flick.

On December 12, 1925, the world's first motel opened just north of Santa Barbara. At that time, the Milestone Mo-Tel in San Luis Obispo sat along the nascent two-lane highway, the "101," and charged $1.25 a night for a bungalow with attached garage. The era of automobiles as status symbols had begun; for it was only those with cruise-worthy cars that would stop at the Motel Inn on their way between LA and San Francisco. Today, Southern California is still a car culture. This exhibition will examine the enduring love affair between Southern Californians and their automobiles. Chosen from the collection of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, these photographs explore the psychological place of the car in Southern California life. Whether in celebration, investigation, or incrimination, all of the photographs depict those unique mental states that can only be produced behind the wheel.

For more information about the exhibition, click here.


Portrayal/Betrayal
Santa Barbara Museum of Art
Santa Barbara, CA
June 2 - September 16, 2012


Countless exhibitions and endless pages in art history books have been devoted to the genre of portraiture, because faces transcend time, culture, and geography and speak directly to human desires, fears, and hopes. Since the discovery of photography in 1839, the photographic portrait as fine art has evolved dramatically.

What does a portrait reveal? Does the subject portray the person's real self or betray things about the self? In his last major work, Camera Lucida, French theorist Roland Barthes confessed, "Once I feel myself observed by the lens, everything changes: I constitute myself in the process of posing, I instantaneously make another body for myself, I transform myself in advance into an image." Photographers and sitters cooperate, collude, and sometimes collide in the creation of a portrait. Yet, despite both the message the photographer aims to portray and the image the sitter chooses to betray, the true control resides with the viewer, who ultimately interprets the photograph.

This exhibition explores the endlessly interesting terrain of the portrait in over 100 photographs, drawn mainly from the permanent collection, that reveal an infinite range of human complexities and contradictory states of heart and mind. Organized into nine distinct groups, each section reflects a different conceptual approach and explores the shifting negotiation of control from the person behind the camera to the one in front of the camera and, finally, to the viewer.

For more information, click here.



The Permanent Way
apexart
New York, NY
June 6 -July 28, 2012


July 1 is the sesquicentennial of the Pacific Railway Act, the federal legislation that enabled the development of the first transcontinental railroads. This exhibition marks the occasion by bringing together American landscape photographs by living artists with archival material charting the expansion of railroads during the second half of the nineteenth century.

Permanent way is a term for the track on a railroad. Here it is shorthand for how railroads dramatically reshaped Americans' notion of the country's landscape. Cultural historian Leo Marx related Nathaniel Hawthorne's horror, in 1844, at the intrusion of smoke-belching locomotives into his beloved Sleepy Hollow. Yet by the time the Pacific Railway Act was passed two decades later, railroads were pervasive and inextricably woven into Americans' lives. Even the most isolated rural residents were tethered to urban centers by the steel rails running through nearby fields. This ubiquity guaranteed for railroads a seemingly permanent place in the American unconscious. Ask someone today to describe an iconic American landscape and you're likely to be told of fields stretching away to mountains at the horizon and a train passing through in the middle distance. This image was fixed in part by now-celebrated nineteenth-century photographers like A.J. Russell, Timothy O'Sullivan, and William Henry Jackson.

The photographers in The Permanent Way are not concerned exclusively with railroads, or even with American landscapes. Nonetheless, they are sensitive interpreters of their environment, and each has at some point noticed the continuing power and imaginative pull of railroads — or of their ruins. This exhibition uses an important anniversary to celebrate their work and to place it in a historical context.

For more information, click here.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the representation of Rick Finkelstein.

Finkelstein's wildly imaginative photographs are windows into elaborate dioramas of the artist's own construction. Much like an alchemist, Finkelstein aims to invest these inanimate objects with life, if only for just enough time to be captured by the camera. Often playful, deceiving in scale, and laced with art-historical references, the pictures question idea of truthfulness in photography and art in general.

While Finkelstein's artistic endeavors began with large charcoal drawings, he has found that photography is an especially effective medium for framing his unique melodramas. His penchant for story telling stems from a long career as a criminal trial attorney, an occupation that has much in common with the role of the artist, according to Finkelstein. Likening the viewer of a work of art to a jury, he says "I want to interest the jury in that story, want them to learn more, and at the end of the day to both fill in the rest of the story and believe it."

A selection of works from the series can be seen by clicking here.
The big color prints in the German photographer's American début include landscapes and interior views that look a lot like Andreas Gursky's, but at a far less inflated scale. Both artists are fond of the broad, sweeping vista, but they undercut grandeur with ruin, overdevelopment, or everyday reality, particularly in Vanhöfen's picture of an empty elevated highway slicing through a postcard-perfect green valley. Vanhöfen is equally good with cramped spaces, notably in his images of old brick structures huddled under expressway overpasses. His best picture, though, is a theatrically hellish scene of destruction: the aftermath of a fire and the subsequent frost in an automobile junk yard. Through May 5.

To read the original article, click here.
In his latest exhibit "Aftermath," German fine-art photographer Jörn Vanhöfen explores the physical, cultural and social forces at work around the world, and how they often collide with the natural world. The large-format color photos, now on display at the Robert Mann Gallery in New York City through May 5, are stunning in scale and detail. But they also evoke beauty, wit, drama and outrage in equal parts.

To read the entire blog, click here.
On Saturday mornings, USC professor Robbert Flick, a titan in the world of documentary photography, likes to go for long drives around Los Angeles, down streets like Normandie Avenue and Jefferson Boulevard, San Pedro Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, past old craftsman homes and studio lots and the sun-bleached stucco walls of the best produce markets in the city.

These are working joyrides: Flick, who has taught photography at the USC Roski School of Fine Arts since 1976, commutes by train and shoots much of his work from an innocuous moving minivan, capturing the rhythms of street life through streams of images taken from a motorized tripod, allowing him to keep his eyes on the road.

The resulting images, arranged in a grid like a long moving strip, are familiar terrain for the residents in Los Angeles, the daily backdrop of living in this city. But they also are irretrievably lost moments, fragments of another day - the constantly changing skyline and glimpses of people heading to somewhere else, mimicking the experience of gazing out of a train window.

So it could not be more fitting that the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) commissioned Flick to provide the artwork for a major stop on the new Exposition Line opening this Saturday, a historic light rail expansion that will finally connect the city's downtown core to its most populous neighborhood, South Los Angeles.

Flick's new piece, On Saturdays, will grace the Expo Park/USC stop at an entrance to the main USC campus near the USC Fisher Museum of Art, just across the street from the Natural History Museum, the California Science Center and the Californian African American Museum.

Read the full USC article and see a video with Robbert Flick by clicking here.
The New York Times speaks with Leo Rubinfien about curating the Garry Winogrand retrospective at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, on view through May 31, 2012.

To read the full article click here.

For more information about the exhibition, click here.
We hope you can visit us at booth 413 at the AIPAD Photography Show from March 29 - April 1 at the Park Avenue Armory at Park Avenue and 67th Street. The gallery will present new works by gallery artists along with a selection of vintage masterpieces.

Robert Mann Gallery proudly announced the representation of German artist Jörn Vanhöfen this year. Concurrent with his debut show at the gallery (on view March 15 - May 5), our installation will prominently feature one of his large-scale landscapes. This work will highlight our concentrated installation of the New Topographics movement and it's influence on contemporary photography. In this grouping work by pioneers Joe Deal and Henry Wessel will contextualize work by adjunct new topo photographers including Jeff Brouws and Richard Misrach.

We are especially pleased to present new work by Julie Blackmon, celebrated for her elaborately choreographed photographs of familial chaos.

Among the selections from our significant holdings of classical photography, the gallery will showcase a tightly curated group of Photo League photographers including Lisette Model, Aaron Siskind, Fred Stein and Weegee.

We invite you to attend the opening night gala to benefit inMotion, an organization dedicated to helping low-income women obtain legal services. For more information or to purchase tickets please click here.

We look forward to seeing you at AIPAD!
Julie Blackmon: "The Power of Now and Other Tales from Home"
March 9 - April 21, 2012

Houston Center for Photography
1441 West Alabama
Houston, TX 77006

For more information, click here.
Jeff Brouws has been nominated for the fourth cycle of the Prix Pictet, the world's leading photographic award in sustainability. Brouws's Proximity series (part of his larger After Trinity project that deals with nuclear weapons from an anthropological and contemporary perspective) was selected by Francis Hodgson, photography critic for the Financial Times and former head of the photographs department at Sotheby's.



Artist Statement

The Proximity series is part of my larger project concerning nuclear weapons entitled After Trinity. Atomic weaponry entered my consciousness after I read Hiroshima as a ninth-grader. This "crime against humanity" as written by John Hershey stunned me. Unfortunately, his words haven't had the same effect on the world stage. Sixty-seven years after the first atom bomb flew from the Enola Gay, the possibility of nuclear holocaust remains. However, with this photographic project I hope to generate discussion about this on-going global threat. As artists we can use the power of our artwork to address socio-political issues, help educate and enlighten, and foment change. Through this increased awareness we can insure a nuclear-free future for everyone.

By photographing active ICBM Minuteman Missile silos and their adjacency to everyday places in North Dakota, I wanted to document the shocking proximity of these weapons of mass destruction to small-town American environments. By pitting the "routines" of daily life — the working of the grain elevator, the keeping of bees, the ebb-and-flow of the local convenience store — I wanted to contrast and heighten the surreal destructive power these weapons have when compared to the fragility and familiarity of everyday landscapes that lie just a few miles distant. These missile silos and their "nearness" to the commonplace goings-on of normal folk aren't the visual equivalent of a tsunami or earthquake, but rather represent scenes of a quieter, below-the-radar disaster which potentially impacts all of humanity.

I also wanted to highlight the hegemonic power the U.S. Government possesses in making unilateral decisions when locating these weapons within the landscape. With all ICBM Minuteman missile silos placed in areas with low population densities, do rural Americans ever feel a sense of "powerlessness" when contemplating a government that would sacrifice their lives in the event of a nuclear war? Were they consulted?

The photographs also ask additional questions and challenge prevailing notions of absolute power and military might. In political terms: will nations with nuclear capability finally conclude these weapons have never been the means to a peaceful world, just the eager armament of a war that can have no winners? Or in economic terms: was the six trillion dollars spent since 1941 on nuclear weapons development by our military-industrial complex worth it? Did that program keep us "safe?" Could those monies have been put toward a greater social good?

These are the questions that arise for me.

— Jeff Brouws, Stanfordville, New York 2012

For further information about the After Trinity project click here.
June 8 - September 22
Hamburger Kunsthalle
Glockengießerwall 20095
Hamburg
Germany


Lost Places, a group exhibition, features an entire room of work by Jörn Vanhöfen, as well as work by other contemporary masters including Andreas Gursky and Thomas Struth. Focusing on the theme of isolation in contemporary photography coming out of the German school of artists, Lost Places will address the displacement of the old in favor of the new- brought on by technology and globalization. For more information, click here.
February 13 - May 6, 2012
Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature
Hôtel de Mongelas
62, rue des Archives
75003 Paris

The Museum of Hunting and Nature in Paris, France presents photographs from the new series Pièges by Laurent Millet. In this work, geometric studies are made by white stretched lines in the former hunting territory of the park Bel-Val. The artist questions the idea of the trap as it relates to hunted animals in nature. For more information, click here.
"Holly Andres, 'Farmer' of Photographs"

Portland, Oregon based photographer Holly Andres's second solo exhibit in Manhattan, "The Fall of Spring Hill", opened last week at Robert Mann Gallery. Her large and vividly cinematic images employ personal memories and archetypes to create narrative. In a short interview, Ms. Andres generously provides a window into her process; working with actors, thrift store shopping, and "farming" photographs, as opposed to "hunting" them.

RH: How do you go about planning and executing such detailed images? Can you briefly explain your process?

HA: To borrow a distinction coined by Jeff Wall, I'm more of a farmer rather than a hunter. Although I have a really perceptive 'internal camera,' I'm not a photographer that shoots daily. I usually embark on a photo project with a prevailing theme in mind for the entire series and then, rather systematically, craft each individual photograph. Typically an idea evolves from a life experience, memory or conversation that elicits a powerful image (or 'filmstrip') in my mind. The way that I work requires a lot of pre-production, much like preparing for a film shoot, as well as an extensive post-production phase. Often my work involves the tension between an apparently approachable subject matter and a darker, sometimes disturbing subtext. I'm interested in the cognitive dissonance that can result from employing formal elements such as bright colors, decorative patterns, theatrical lighting and characters that reflect stereotypes of innocence, girlish femininity and motherhood to address unsettling themes.

RH: How do you coordinate and direct so many actors?

HA: It's certainly a challenge. Depending on the complexity of the shoot, I typically spend several weeks in the pre-production phase. I've become pretty selective about who I work with as actors. I have found that working with other artists - and their children - is advantageous because they seem to have an understanding for the creative process. I try to embark on my shoots with a consciously prepared vision, consisting of a constructed environment, theatrical lighting and deliberate costuming, coupled with an unselfconscious attempt to capture natural uncertainty. I am finding that the counterbalancing of choreographed structure with the unpredictable response of the subjects' "performance" can govern the most compelling results.

RH: Why the vintage look to your images? That has to be an effort to re-create, especially for images with so many subjects.

HA: My work has always been self-referential and filled with personal narratives. My photographs can be seen as period pieces as they are typically an attempt to examine or enshrine a childhood memory that proved to be life transforming in some way. I have always been drawn to old things, and I tend to prefer a vintage aesthetic. I engage in a lot of thrift shopping, which is an important part of my conceptual process. Often times I will find an object that triggers a memory in which I will then craft a narrative around.

RH: Are the images in this new series "The Fall of Spring Hill" autobiographical in part?

HA: Yes. The premise of the series is derived from a distant but poignant early childhood memory. Through a suite of 13 photographs, "The Fall of Spring Hill" illustrates an incident from a summer church camp in which a child injures himself by falling from a dilapidated wooden play structure and the mothers' fierce reaction to deconstruct it in retribution.

To read the original article, please click here.
Oregon Public Broadcasting presents a slideshow presentation of "The Fall of Spring Hill" - on view at Robert Mann Gallery beginning Thursday, January 26th. For more information please click here.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the representation of Jörn Vanhöfen.

In his disquieting landscapes, Jörn Vanhöfen's work is characterized by elements whose sublime renderings betray their sometimes disturbing reality. Stunning in their visual appeal and the artfulness of the photographer's craft, the images which comprise the series Aftermath depict a world unsettled. Traveling the globe over, Vanhöfen arrives at pictures that capture the remnants of civilizations transformed by the pursuit of growth and wealth. While his subject matter is often marked by human intervention (often destructive) in the landscape, stylistic nuances provoke sensations of delight as well as anxiety, and in some instances - even hope. Vanhöfen's images extend beyond more familiar conceptions of post-New Topographics landscape photography.

Not simply documents, these grand images function as visual metaphors, allegories of architecture and the complex dynamic between nature and culture. The final prints are infused with a delicate appreciation for the subtleties achieved by chemical (as opposed to digital) printing.

An accomplished artist, curator, writer and professor, Jörn Vanhöfen was born in Dinslaken, Germany. He studied photography at the University of Essen and at the Academy of Visual Arts in Leipzig, where he earned his Master of Arts degree.

Vanhöfen's work has been exhibited Internationally, including in Berlin, Lisbon, Madrid, Mexico City, Rome, Tokyo and Zurich.

He lives in Berlin, Germany and Cape Town, South Africa.

For more information, please visit Jörn Vanhöfen's profile.
Julie Blackmon at The Art Museum at the University of Kentucky
Through January 15

The Art Museum at the University of Kentucky
Singletary Center for the Arts
405 Rose Street
Lexington, KY 40506

For more information, click here.
THE MONTPARNASSE MUSEUM PRESENTS
"PORTRAITS OF EXILE: THE PHOTOGRAPHS OF FRED STEIN"

November 4 - November 26, 2011
Musée du Montparnasse
21 avenue du Maine
75015 Paris

The Montparnasse Museum presents 100 of Fred Stein's portraits of exile taken in Paris and New York. Stein, who fled fascist Germany as early as 1933, went on to work with, befriend and photograph some of the greatest intellectuals, artists, poets, musicians and writers of the 20th century. The subjects of his portraits include: Arnold Schoenberg, Marc Chagall, Alexander Calder, Robert Capa, Max Ernst, Walter Gropius, Marlene Dietrich, Pablo Neruda and Albert Einstein. For more information, visit Le Musée du Montparnasse.
Gail Albert Halaban is featured on the cover of The New York Times Magazine.
To pay tribute to The Radical Camera: New York's Photo League, 1936-1951 (opening November 4th) at the Jewish Museum, New York, Robert Mann Gallery will be showing a tightly curated selection of work drawn from our inventory of artists who were either directly or indirectly involved with the New York Photo League. Berenice Abbott, Lisette Model, Aaron Siskind and Weegee are among the noted members of this cooperative of amateur and professional photographers who were equally concerned with documenting social issues of the time as well as promoting photography as a true artistic medium. Works by these artists along with their colleagues will be on view in the gallery's back viewing area starting October 27th.

For more information on the Photo League and the exhibition at the Jewish Museum, click here.
American Landscape: Contemporary Photographs of the West featuring work by Joe Deal
Joslyn Art Museum
Omaha, NE
September 17, 2011 - January 8, 2012


This exhibition features work by a dozen photographers who have sought to create a direct and clear-eyed appraisal of the American landscape incorporating the lessons of New Topographics as well as the influence of the earliest photographers who surveyed the West in the 1860s and 1870s. Their work is not without the lyricism and affection that has always characterized American landscape photography, but they are more likely to engage local terrain — the suburbs and exurbs; the footprint of industry and development; the confines of a single river basin or valley; or the human history and cultural history within the landscape — that stands between us and the mythic horizon.

For more information, click here.
Pacific Standard Time is an unprecedented collaboration of more than sixty cultural institutions across Southern California, coming together to tell the story of the birth of the L.A. art scene. Initiated through grants from the Getty Foundation, Pacific Standard Time will take place for six months beginning October 2011. Joe Deal's work is part of several exhibitions including:



Seismic Shift - Lewis Baltz, Joe Deal and California Landscape Photography, 1944-1984
California Museum of Photography, Riverside, CA
October 1 - December 21, 2011


In the 1970s and early 1980s, Joe Deal and Lewis Baltz crossed paths at the University of California, Riverside (UCR), and the UCR/ California Museum of Photography. This was the period when the exhibition New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape, which included both photographers, announced the arrival of a radical new aesthetic in landscape. Though the show originated in Rochester, NY, its origins lay significantly in Southern California, and its effect was to shift the epicenter of landscape photography from Northern California to the SoCal region.

Seismic Shift will illuminate the far-reaching consequences of this revolution in landscape photography by tracing its regional history. Beginning with Ansel Adams and Edward Weston — and with the 1946 arrival in San Francisco of Minor White, who would extend the Weston-Adams tradition by transforming it — the exhibition will follow the history in the 1950s and 1960s through the careers of Wynn Bullock, Brett Weston and many others. Then it will examine how the 1970s work of Baltz, Deal, Robert Adams and Henry Wessel — the Western contingent of the New Topographics — created a shock of recognition, an awakening to mutual ideas different from those of their predecessors, that a younger generation of photographers shared. Portfolios of the period, one done by a class Baltz taught at UCR, will demonstrate the immediacy that these ideas had.

For more information, click here.



Under the Big Black Sun: California Art 1974-1981
Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA
October 1, 2011 - February 13, 2012


The years covered by the exhibition bracket a tumultuous, transitional period in United States history, beginning with Richard Nixon's resignation and ending with Ronald Reagan's inauguration. The exhibition borrows its title from the album by the Los Angeles-based punk band X to suggest that the California Dream and the hippie optimism of the late 1960s had been eclipsed by a sense of disillusionment during this post-Watergate, post-Vietnam era. Under the Big Black Sun seeks to demonstrate how this collective loss of faith in government and institutions yielded a spirit of artistic freedom and experimentation that reached its apex in California through the pluralistic art practices that flourished here. Across the state, competing social and political ideologies and clashing cultural perspectives resulted in heterodox approaches to art-making. A DIY attitude was embraced by California artists, particularly young, recent art school graduates, resulting in the hybridization of media and the breaking apart of traditional forms and genres. The dystopian atmosphere of the 1970s created an artistic milieu that seemed to include everything under the sun.

For more information, click here.



In Focus: Los Angeles, 1945-1980
J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Center, Los Angeles, CA
December 20, 2011 - May 6, 2012


"This exhibition features both iconic and relatively unknown work by artists whose careers are defined by their association with Los Angeles, who may have lived in the city for a few influential years, or who might have visited only briefly," said Virginia Heckert, curator, Department of Photographs, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and curator of the exhibition. The photographs are loosely grouped around the themes of experimentation, street photography, architectural depictions, and the film and entertainment industry. Works featured in the exhibition are from artists such as Jo Ann Callis, Robert Cumming, Joe Deal, Judy Fiskin, Anthony Friedkin, Robert Heinecken, Anthony Hernandez, Man Ray, Edmund Teske, William Wegman, Garry Winogrand, and Max Yavno. Two of the works in the exhibition by Anthony Hernandez and Henry Wessel Jr. were acquired with funds from the Getty Museum Photographs Council.

For more information, click here.
Temporary Structures, an exhibition featuring work by MARY MATTINGLY
September 18 - December 31, 2011
deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum
Lincoln, MA


Temporary Structures: Performing Architecture in Contemporary Art will be on view at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum from September 18 - December 31, 2011. The exhibition will highlight work that seeks to underscore the malleable and active nature of our built environment by merging two dominant strains of art practice today: performance and architectural subject matter. By doing so, the artists in this exhibition infuse performative strategies — all of which are time-based and thus, temporal (or temporary) — to destabilize our notion of the fixed architectural space. This follows an understanding of performance in which the ability to perform gender or an identity intonates that it is a social construction that can then be destabilized and is not, as assumed, a fixed entity. Applying such notions of flexibility and destabilization to our built environment, the featured artists in this exhibition present a collective notion of the changing, almost living, nature of architecture. Accordingly, buildings are viewed as active agents within our social lives, informing and performing human behavior, changing states, and telling histories.

For more information click here.
The New Yorker previews the exhibition Elijah Gowin: Into The Sun in the September 12, 2011 issue:

After two previous series of photographs based on appropriated and manipulated material, Gowin picks up his camera and points it at the sun. As usual, his results are low-tech and grainy, as if blown up from antique negatives; they're visionary, abstracted, and a little mad. Whether obscured by clouds, seen through branches, or giving off an aura of glittering flares, Gowin's sun has a lambent glow. And even at its brightest, it rarely feels hot, because the colors are so muted: pale greens, blush pinks, storm-cloud slates. Subtlety is rarely this compelling.

To read the original article, click here.
In the September 2011 issue of ARTnews, Barbara Pollack reviews the gallery's recent exhibition John Mack: Revealing Mexico. The full article is included below: In anticipation of the bicentennial of Mexico's independence from Spain and the centennial of its revolution, the Mexican government commissioned photographer John Mack to create a body of work that would go beyond stereotypes and attempt to capture the complexity of the country. Mack, who has been photographing there since 2002, published the results in Revealing Mexico, a book with essays by Susanne Steines and Teresa del Conde (powerHouse Books, 2010).

This exhibition revealed what Mack discovered as he traversed the country with classic black-and-white film and a Leica camera. To appreciate his achievement, we must look back to a period when Walker Evans and Robert Frank defined documentary photography. Mack's is a view of Mexico devoid of 21st-century cities and headline-stealing drug lords.

Instead, he offers intimate views of pueblos and rural towns. His airy and poetic image Cholula, Puebla (2008) captures flickering white banners decorating the town square, and in Villa de Etla, Oaxaca (2005) there is the haunting site of a lone basketball hoop - almost a found sculpture - in front of a church.

Mack's portraits are heartfelt and sensitive, as in his photograph of a pair of Indians, Lacandon Community of Naha, Chiapas (2002), and the one of a team of aging ranchers, titled Torreón, Coahuila, Mexico (2009). Mack relishes the perfect moment, as seen in Downtown Durango, Durango (2008), where two passengers - a boy resting his elbow out the window and a man in a cowboy hat - are framed by the window of a bus.

Arguably theses photographs do not advance a view of Mexico beyond Paul Strand's moving prints of the 1930s, but they do demonstrate what Mexico has retained of its roots, despite globalization and political turmoil.
Remembering 9/11
Yale University Art Gallery
August 26 - November 27, 2011

To commemorate the tenth anniversary of September 11, 2001, the Gallery presents Remembering 9/11, a rumination on the tragic events of that day. Included are works by Yvonne Jacquette, Nathan Lyons, and Judith Shea, as well as a special installation of Wounded Cities, Leo Rubinfien's acclaimed series of photographs.

In conjunction with the installation Remembering 9/11, artists Nathan Lyons, Leo Rubinfien, Judith Shea, and Robbin Ami Silverberg will join Joshua Chuang, Assistant Curator of Photographs at the Gallery, and Jae Rossman, Assistant Director for Special Collections at the Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library, for a conversation on the impact of September 11 on their lives and work.

For more information, click here.
This selection of pool and seaside photographs doesn't entirely avoid cliché, but the mix is still shrewd and invigorating. And if the artists are familiar - many are from the gallery's roster - the best works are not. Alfred Stieglitz, Harry Callahan, Fred Stein, and Aaron Siskind provide solid historical grounding, the last with his found abstractions of seaweed and gull tracks on wet sand. In contrasting approaches, Robbert Flick suggests the relentlessness of surf with his grid of seventy-two images of surging waves, while Elijah Gowin sees the sunlight sparkling on the water between two bathers as a scattering of jewels.

To read the original article, click here.
Paddle8, the new online community for artists, gallerists and collectors presents it's second exhibition, STUFF: Still Life Photography, curated by Vince Aletti. Laurent Millet's Ne Faites Pas l'Enfant Mr. Kant is included among works by other acclaimed contemporary artists and masters of photography.

For more information, click here.
"THE LIFE AND DEATH OF BUILDINGS"
AT PRINCETON ART MUSEUM
FEATURING WORK BY JEFF BROUWS
July 23 - November 6
Princeton University Art Museum
Princeton New Jersey


On the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, this exhibition looks beyond those events to address the long-term flux of built environments — their birth and evolution, disappearance and excavation, re-use and re-invention — as a mode of continuity that defines history and civilization. The exhibition will serve as the capstone event in a yearlong collaborative exploration entitled "Memory and the Work of Art," organized by arts and cultural organizations at Princeton University and in the Princeton community. For more information, click here.


Please join Robert Mann Gallery on Thursday, July 28, 2011 from 5 to 8 p.m. for the second annual Chelsea Art Walk, a cooperative event organized by the neighborhood's galleries and art institutions. Last year the free, self-guided, public event attracted hundreds of residents and visitors to explore the dynamic arts community offered by internationally acclaimed galleries. Our summer show, At the Water's Edge will be on view for these extended hours and wine will be served.

More than 125 galleries and institutions participating in Chelsea Art Walk 2011 will be open for extended hours, artist talks, live performances, and other special events to showcase the vibrancy of the summer arts scene in Chelsea. Visitors will also be able to enjoy the newly opened second section of the High Line, which extends through Chelsea from 14th Street to 30th Street.

A venue map will be provided by the M Chelsea art map, published by the M magazine, online at intheartworld.com. The Exhibitionist iPhone/iPad app, available for free download through iTunes, will map out participating locations, display photos of the exhibitions, and highlight special events.

Please visit artwalkchelsea.com for more information.
The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Presents
The Investigation, Constitution, and Formation of Flock House
An Exhibition by Mary Mattingly
July 15 - August 14, Friday - Sunday, 12-5pm
LMCC Arts Center at Governors Island

Opening reception: July 16, 3-5pm
The Story of Flock House as told by Mary Mattingly: August 6, 3:30-4:30pm

As a self-sufficient, inhabitable, and micronational space, Flock House explores a city in which structures combine, separate, and recombine, reflecting the daily movements and relationships of metropolitan life. By augmenting community resources through workshops and organized events, Flock House embellishes the etiology of civic folkways, offering opportunities for collaboration, celebration, and invention. Through a combination of slides, videos, diagrams and plans, Mary Mattingly tells the story of Flock House, from its creation, history, to the Flock House as a living space.

For more information please click here.
The New York Center of Photography and the Moving Image presents New York Temporary: The City Through Photography, Film and Video featuring work by Gail Albert Halaban.

The exhibition opens June 21 and runs through August 12, 2011.
Robert Mann Gallery is pleased to announce the representation of the Fred Stein Estate. With this, the Gallery acquires a rich portfolio of vintage photographs from the 1930's and 40's.

Born in Dresden, Germany in 1909, Stein was a bright aspiring lawyer denied admission to the bar by the Nazi government for "racial and political reasons." As the situation became increasingly dangerous in Germany, Stein left for Paris in 1933 with his wife, Liselotte Salzburg. Unable to work as a lawyer, Stein began photographing the streets of Paris with a Leica camera he and his wife had bought each other as a wedding present. It quickly developed into a passion, shooting every day and studying whatever photo books he could find at night. He brought an extremely sophisticated eye and a quick intelligence to his work, and was soon pushing the limits of the camera. In Stein's words: "The Leica taught me photography."

Once France declared war on Germany in 1939, Stein was put in an internment camp for enemy aliens near Paris from which he escaped and made his way south, surviving by hiding in isolated farmhouses. He sent word through underground channels to his wife, alone in now-occupied Paris with their one-year-old daughter, to meet him. Posing as a French national, she maneuvered her way through German controls and was reunited with Stein in a secret location. They made their way to Marseilles by hiding in the bathrooms of trains; once in Marseilles they obtained visas through the Emergency Rescue Committee and on May 7, 1941, the three boarded the SS Winnipeg, one of the last boats to leave France. They carried only the Leica, some prints, and the negatives when they arrived in New York.

In the freedom of New York, the energy of the city infused Stein's work with its rich cultural mix, cultivating his talent. He took to the streets and worked from Harlem to Fifth Avenue, invigorated by the bustle and variety of the New World. He loved the American spirit and as an outsider he came to the various ethnic areas without preconceived ideas. He was able to see in the residents a style, humor and dignity that seems perfectly fresh, even today. At this time, Stein added the medium-format Rolliflex to his repertoire, which takes pictures in square format.

As Stein's mobility decreased in the 1950s, he took that time to pursue his growing interest in portraiture. While he had taken portraits for many years, some of them remarkable, he had primarily been a street photographer. But now he turned to the more intellectual aspect of his artistic exploration. Always gregarious and captivating, he had befriended important writers, artists, scientists, and philosophers through the years. This wide circle of contacts enabled him to meet people he wished to photograph, among them Albert Einstein, Georgia O'Keeffe, Marc Chagall and Norman Mailer.

Fred Stein died in New York City on September 27, 1967 at the age of 58. His photographs can be found in public collections including The Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C., The International Center of Photography, New York, The National Portrait Gallery, Washington, D.C., The Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, Arizona, The Musee Carnavalet, Paris, and The Jewish Museum, New York.

For more information about Fred Stein's photographs, please contact Robert Mann Gallery at (212)-989-7600 or mail@robertmann.com. A selection of works from the series can be seen by clicking here.
Leo Rubinfien's series Wounded Cities will be exhibited at the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo from August 12 through October 23, 2011.

Having experienced the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001 at his home near the World Trade Center, photographer Leo Rubinfien (b. 1953) visited cities around the world that were attacked by terrorists, and photographed faces of people out in the street for six years. This show looks for messages for us living in the same age among the psychological nuances surfacing on his photographs.
Congratulations to John Mack on receiving an award at the 25th Annual New York Book Show for his monograph Revealing Mexico. Mack's project, Revealing Mexico is the subject of his solo exhibition at the gallery on view through July 1, 2011. Click here to view the exhibition.
Richard Steinheimer, the acknowledged "Dean" of western railroad photography, passed away quietly on May 4, 2011, in Sacramento, California, after a long illness. Born in Chicago, Illinois, on August 23, 1929, he migrated to Southern California at the age of six with his mother and sister, where an early love of the desert and wide western geographies bloomed — landscapes that would later become integral to his photography.

Steinheimer broke new aesthetic and technical ground within the field of railroad photography starting in 1946 by moving away from the favored "3/4 wedgie" school pioneered by predecessors like Lucius Beebe. Instead he instigated an interpretive style that encompassed the entire railroad scene and environment in novel fashion, with human interest a major focus. Utilizing a range of cameras from 4 x 5 Speed Graphics to 2 1/4 Rolleicords to 35mm Nikons over the course of his career, he also pioneered the use of synchronized and open-flash when shooting railroad subjects years prior to such better-known contemporaries as O.Winston Link. Not content to merely make the pictures, he also became a master darkroom craftsman with a print quality often rivaling the tonalities of those made by Ansel Adams.

Beyond the photography, "Stein's" humble demeanor, sense of fellowship, stamina in the field, and generosity in sharing his knowledge of railroading, history and photography — not to mention his talent and creativity — enamored him to, and inspired a younger generation of railroad photographers, who rightfully have conferred upon him heroic status. The passion with which he photographed trains and railroading was infectious. He will be deeply missed as he and his work touched many.

— written by Jeff Brouws
Art for the Expo Line: First Art Panels Installed!
by Zipporah Lax Yamamoto
April 29, 2011


The first art panels by Robbert Flick are installed at Expo Park/USC Station.

The first art panels were installed today at Expo Park/USC Station, marking a major milestone for the Expo Line. Installation of the 24 art panels will continue over the weekend. If you're at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books at USC this weekend you might be able to get a sneak peak!

Click here to view additional images.
The Wall Street Journal reviewed the recent exhibition Food For Thought: A Group Exhibition in the April 9, 2011 issue. The full review by William Meyers is included below:

Here's a smorgasbord of 37 photographs that treat a variety of foods in many ways. The pictures at Robert Mann date from pictorialist Edwin Hale Lincoln's platinum print "Untitled (Still Life with Grapes)" (1912) to Kevin Kay's three Polaroid images of two naked women and some oranges, all titled "Citrine" (2011). Several pictures are by well-known artists, such as Man Ray's photogravure of a surreal turkey, "Cuisine (Kitchen): From the Portfolio Electricité" (1931); Harry Callahan's "Chicago" (c. 1951), a red, blue and black dye-transfer print that is almost painfully austere; and Josef Sudek's "My Window" (1952), one apple on a plate in front of a fogged window, somehow both enigmatic and wise. From the signs in Berenice Abbott's "Jacob Heymann Butcher Shop, 345 Sixth Avenue, New York" (1938) we learn prime rib roast was selling for 24 cents a pound and the "Very Best Geese" could be had for 20 cents a pound.

Several pictures are by underappreciated photographers like Leslie Gill (1908-1958), whose photogram "Rest for the Stomach" (1935) shows a fish, a fork and a sophisticated imagination, and Fred Stein (1909-1967), whose modernist "Fish Platter, Brittany, France" (1935) has the silvery morsels radiating like petals on a daisy. Midcareer artists Gail Albert Halaban and Holly Andres both have domestic tableaux vivants: In Ms. Halaban's "Untitled (Valentine's kitchen)" (1990-2003), a 30-ish woman prepares a meal; in Ms. Andres's "Abby" (2006), a dutiful young girl brings food to the table. Note the Betty Crocker Cookbook on the windowsill.
The New York Times
An Exhibit Focuses on Food Loved by the Camera
By Florence Fabricant
March 30, 2011


An exhibition of food photography from the last 80 years or so, including names like Irving Penn and Ansel Adams, shows the artistry and range of the genre. It includes a panorama of food signs by Berenice Abbott, silvery fish in a 1930s French market, and arresting still-life arrangements by Paulette Tavormina and Julie Blackmon inspired by Flemish and Dutch masters.

nytimes.com →
The New Yorker reviewed our recent exhibition O. Winston Link: The Last Steam Railroad in America in the March 28, 2011 issue. The full review is included below:

Long before Gregory Crewdson, Link was staging odd, cinematic scenarios in the suburbs. His photographs, made in the late nineteen-fifties, were shot in high-contrast black-and-white and revolved around the trains of the Norfolk & Western line — the last American steam engines still in use. Trains chug through all of Link's photographs, which were meticulously, cast and lighted and timed — on a bridge above children swimming in a creek or or right outside the window of a busy general store. The results are vintage Americana as nostalgic as Normal Rockwell, as obsessive as Henry Darger.
We hope you can visit us at booth 410 at the AIPAD Photography Show from March 17 - March 20 at the Park Avenue Armory at Park Avenue and 67th Street. The gallery will present new works by gallery artists along with a selection of vintage masterpieces.

Our presentation will also introduce the work of three new artists: Kevin Kay, John Mack and Fred Stein. Kevin Kay uses a Polaroid camera with nearly antiquated film to create provocative and challenging nudes and still lives. John Mack has created an extraordinarily passionate and comprehensive body of work capturing the essence of Mexico through it's people and places. Mack's "Revealing Mexico" series will be the subject of a solo show at the gallery later this spring. Having been recently rediscovered Fred Stein's images depict an atmospheric and romantic portrait of both Paris and New York in the 1930s. Stein passed away early leaving a very limited body of work but each image is an extraordinary testament to the innate ability this artist had in capturing the perfect moment on film, whether joyful or melancholy.

Following the success of her recent exhibition Line: Up, the gallery will debut new, somewhat edgier work by Julie Blackmon. Selections from Michael Kenna's latest body of work created in China, Huangshan, will be on view, as well as recent additions to Chip Hooper's series California's Pacific. Rounding out the gallery's presentation of contemporary work are images by Holly Andres and Jeff Brouws.

And no fair would be complete without the gallery drawing from our significant holdings of classical photography. Our installation will feature an array of vintage work by 20th century masters including, but not limited to, Ansel Adams, Joe Deal, Mario Giacomelli, Aaron Siskind, and David Vestal.

AIPAD Photography Show Hours
Thursday, March 17 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Friday, March 18 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 19 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 20 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
The New Yorker's Caroline Hirsch wrote about our recent exhibition O. Winston Link: The Last Steam Railroad in America on the Photo Booth blog:

The other day I took the subway to see some trains: steam-powered ones, as meticulously styled, lit, and captured by O. Winston Link, in a series of photographs now on view at the Robert Mann Gallery. I was lucky enough to work with Link at my first assistant-photo-editor job, but this was the first exhibition of Link's work I've attended; it was a pleasure to see so many of his carefully crafted, cinematic images of a very particular moment in American time all in one place.

View the slideshow online.
Leo Rubinfien is currently the subject of two solo exhibitions in Tokyo, Japan, and has an upcoming solo exhibition at Stanford University.

A selection of 34 photographs is on view at Taka Ishii Gallery in Tokyo through January 29th. Surveying Rubinfien's rich 30-year career as a traveler exploring the vulnerable and melancholic disposition shared throughout the world, the 34 images exhibited are selected from Rubinfien's upcoming publication In the World City.

Also in Tokyo, Rubinfien's exhibition The Ardbeg is currently on view at Kurenboh Chohouin Buddhist Temple Gallery through February 25. The exhibition is accompanied by a 16-page catalogue co-published by Kurenboh and Taka Ishii Gallery, printed in a limited edition of 1,000 copies, signed and numbered by Leo Rubinfien.

Paths through the Global City will be on view at Stanford University's Cantor Arts Center from February 2 through May 1, 2011. The exhibition will present both color and black-and-white photographs from his previous series A Map of the East and Wounded Cities as well as two others still in progress.
ARTINFO's Modern Art Notes listed Joe Deal: West and West: Reimagining the Great Plains as one of their top 10 shows of 2010:

"West and West: Reimagining the Great Plains," by Joe Deal, in book form and at Robert Mann Gallery. One of America's most underrated synthesizers of landscape, Deal made important work up until his death this year. He was 63.

You can read the entire article here.