Paul Graham. American Night


Michael Mack, Paul Graham

SteidlMack, Londen, 2003


out of print

At the heart of this work are extremely light photographs of the American landscape which evoke the feeling of stepping out of a sheltered place into bright sunlight, temporarily blinding the viewer with an overwhelming whiteness. Drained of colour, shadow and form, they resonate with the lives of those they portray walking, carrying, waiting and wandering in the bleached landscape. This sequence snaps occasionally to a vibrant full colour image of a freshly minted — dream home — blue sky, green grass and a verdant palette that is perfect beyond attainment — before returning to the glare of a brilliant emptiness. This enveloping whiteness is only really broken by a series of dark street portraits, which brings the claustrophobic intensity of the inner city to the work, before being enveloped once again by this narrative of light.

The images are not just opposites in their paucity or wealth of colour, but also in their content: these perfect homes are unobtainable to those walking in the burnt landscape, they are a mirage, a dream that can almost never be reached. We have stumbled into the chasm between promise and actuality, hope and reality, dreams and truth.

Artikelnummer: 822 Categorie:

ISBN: 9783882439199

136 pages, 63 colour plates, 38,5 × 29,5 cm, hardcover, English