8 framed type-R prints, 50" x 50" installed
Betty Grable (#1-4), 1999
Framed type-R prints, 19" x 19" each
5 framed type-R prints, hung vertically, 105" x 21" installed
2 framed type-R prints, 21" x 43" installed
3 framed chromogenic development prints, 92" x 30" installed; and in foreground, 2 digital video loops, 1 hour each
Photo installation, Patricia Sweetow Gallery, San Francisco, 1999-2005.
Type-R color prints
Ideal City is inspired by the painting of the same name by Piero della Francesca. Della Francesca painted an idealized urban scene - devoid of people, a harmony of classical architectural elements. Rather than mystical/rational space, I'm looking at male and female forms - abstracted and close up, fragmented into gesture, or taken apart and reassembled.
When I look at a body intimately, the middle distance is lost, the body becomes abstract, and the impersonal rhythms of chance become apparent - a random freckle or mole, hair patterns like action paintings. A patch of skin can seem as derelict as a deserted city, and even that estrangement supports my attention.
Am I neo-classical if I return to the language of film classics? Certainly Betty Grable's hair acknowledges at once my project's debt to architecture and my desire to work in an idiom as immediately legible to the citizens of my ideal city as Horace's generalities were to ancient Rome. I guess Betty's hair interests me more than her famous legs because her legs seem to beckon straight men while her hair definitely calls to the drag queen in me. At any rate, we know her only through TV and film - mediums in which Red, Blue, and Green combine to make everything we see.