This week begins the final week to visit my current show, Is This Place Great or What: Artifacts and Photographs at the Julie Saul Gallery in New York.
In many ways, the inter web has been profound in broadcasting the medium of photography across it’s data waves. Besides the apparent resolution issue, one can get a strong idea of what a work is, or will be. This exhibition is one of the first where it becomes crucial to actually visit in person. I do not mean to undermine my own insistence on the print being something grandly revealing in person. It’s just that this show is the first to include a myriad of objects along the photographs.
The compulsion to collect physical things grew out of the act of photographing itself. After spending some countless hours trying to photograph a sign on the outside of a long abandoned mall, I came to the conclusion that while the 8×10 camera really does transform something so dramatically, some subjects test its limits. It simply seemed to make more sense to move the sign itself rather than the representation, in my thinking and extension of the photographic process itself. This set in motion a succinct attention to the artifact. The process is not easy, choosing an object with an idea that it may transform through a new context or reconfiguration means investing a lot in what could simply exist as junk. Further this dilemma with the content of the thing itself; retail ephemera, signs, maps, architect drawings, photographs, reams of office correspondence, and it becomes clear why I never let myself give in to this inclination over the last 10 years, I needed the storage!
Show closes Saturday, May 5th.
Julie Saul Gallery
535 West 22 Street
New York, NY 10011