Thursday, June 18, 2009

On The Beach

This past weekend, we were finally able to make it to the High Museum of Art, here in Atlanta. It's an impressive museum space, designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, and it houses a significant collection of 19th and 20th century American and European art, African-American art, and some outstanding contemporary and modern pieces. The High (as it's often called here), has a partnership with the Louvre and is currently exhibiting Claude Monet's "Water Lilies," which was fairly interesting.

But, I was really intrigued and moved by an exhibit of Richard Misrach's photography series, "On The Beach." Each photo was huge, in some cases measuring 6 x 10 feet, and the detail captured in each was just extraordinary. The photos are of people in the ocean, and/or on the beach in various positions and postures - but photographed from an almost omniscient spot high above.

As Misrach explains, "The photographs that appear in On the Beach were made between January 2002 and November 2005. My thinking was influenced by the events of 9/11, as well as by the 1950s Cold War novel and film, On the Beach. I was drawn to the fragility and grace of the human figure in the landscape. For me, the work is both a celebration of our survival and an elegy. Paradise has become an uneasy dwelling place; the sublime sea frames our vulnerability, the precarious nature of life itself."

Truly fantastic.

1 comment:

Lauren J said...

Those photos are incredible. I love the footprint detail in the first shot you posted.