I was an early supporter of Ryan McGinley’s snapshot/verite/street/ hippy/color style going so far as to suggest he join Magnum when I
was the director in 2003. But he’s done just fine on his own, thank you! At 24 Ryan McGinley was the youngest artist ever to have a solo show
at The Whitney. Then last year he was awarded ICP’s “Young Photographer of The Year” award.
Kathy Ryan, the New York Times Magazine’s picture editor, was another early supporter commissioning McGinley in 2004 to do a portfolio of photographs of the U.S. Olympic swim team. Quite naturally, McGinley shot them underwater. Since then he has been a regular for the magazine and last week they ran 28 pages of his pictures of Oscar nominees in their annual “Breakthrough Performances in Film” portfolio. (Where their unforced plein-air inventiveness put Vanity Fair's over-produced behemoth to shame.)
As with every portfolio, there were great pictures and some merely good ones, but the most intriguing thing in this multi-media age was the accompanying film clip from the Times’ website. It not only gives an interesting insight into McGinley’s process, but shows that he might just be as good a video artist and film-maker as he is a photographer.