Thursday, June 3, 2010

My Pie Town

Ruth Leonard Secures a Calf in Her Pasture

Continuing my look at graduating student work, from the SVA (School of Visual Art) MFA program, this provocative group of images by Debbie Grossman. Based on Farm Security Administration photographer Russell Lee's classic 1940 portrait of Pie Town, New Mexico, Grossman appropriates and photoshops Lee's photographs to re-imagine Pie Town as a homestead community populated exclusively by women.

Grossman's website is also worth checking out for a few more Pietown images and a sad but moving work that's a poignant tribute to her mother.

Jessie Evans-Whinery with Her Wife Edith and Their Baby

Community Meeting

Couple at a Square Dance

Jean and Virginia Norris, Homesteaders and Town Founders

And the Russell Lee original:

This also brings to mind this piece by Kathy Grove - a professional retoucher and artist whose conceptual work involved retouching iconic images. Here her ironic prettifying of Dorothea Lange's "Migrant Mother".


Cinza Azul said...

very cool

Kerry Cox said...

It sort of calls to mind the same questions as the Gursky work posted in that it readresses photography a a medium. In both cases artists are not litterally pushing a button but exploring the boundaries of the medium by almost making it secondary. Grossman's primary medium appears to be photoshop - which could be really gross, but I think is really successfully intimate. It's great work - how large were they?

Norman said...

Sorry to disagree, but I don't see how this kind of retouching equals any kind of ontological inquiry into the medium of photography. Also, the retouching itself is, I'm afraid, not too well done. Student work indeed.

The Photodiarist said...

I agree with Norman. I am confused as to why expertise in Photoshop in and of itself(and with respect to Gursky, expertise in cropping)equals creativity in photography.

Susan Whishaw said...

Yet another example of "out of whack"!! Don't like any of it. What's the purpose of fiddling with someone else's work????!!!

Jonathan said...

Is this for some fashion mag Ad :(
It should be remembered.
"The good photograph is not the object, The consequences of the photograph are the objects. So that no one would say, how did you do it, where did you find it, but they would say that such things could be." ( Dorothea Lange )

Nora said...

I'm particularly taken with Ms Grove's work. Thanks for sharing!

.Robert Sullivan said...

These are cool, obviously. Just to say, here are these: