It’s that time of year again. Spring has arrived, the weather begins to get warmer, the skies begin to clear and the dread days of winter begin to become memories.
Oh, and here in New York City, photography dealers from around the world make their pilgrimage here to display their wares at the Association of International Photography Dealers’ (AIPAD) annual Photography Show. As I’ve done in past years, I’m suspending the blog from posting my own photos so I can report on and post some photos from this show, which is said to be the largest photography fair in the world.
This year’s show was held recently from April 10 to April 13 at the Park Avenue Armory in Manhattan. I was invited to the press preview on April 9, and though unavailable to attend that day, I was able to go on another.
Besides being able to look at thousands of examples of great photography, you never know who from the photographic world you’ll come across at an event like this. I met the late Arnold Newman at this show several years ago, and this year I’m happy to report that I met the well known photographer Jerry Uelsmann for the first time, as well as Mexican photographer Flor Garduño, whose work I have long admired. Uelsmann is famous for his photographs combining images from multiple negatives using different enlargers, so I asked him how many enlargers he has. The answer? Seven. (I told him that I am lucky to be able to use just one.)
As for the photographs themselves, there are the requisite classic images from the most famous photographers to be seen, but I’m always happy to see beautiful or interesting but lesser known images that were made by these people, as well as interesting work by lesser known photographers.
One of the arrangements that I found interesting were two examples of Ansel Adams’ “Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico,” hung on the wall, one above the other, at the Scott Nichols Gallery. One was listed as having been printed in the 1960’s and the other in the 1970’s. I’ve read that as Adams got older, his prints became more contrasty, and these two examples made from the same negative would seem to confirm that, as the later print definitely had more contrast than the earlier one.
The Weston Gallery always brings great classic images, and this year’s display included works by Sally Mann, Paul Caponigro and Wynn Bullock. The print that really caught my attention, though, was a vintage 1927 nude by Edward Weston, “Bertha, Glendale,” signed my Weston and numbered 4/50. (It’s a beautiful print to behold, but with a price tag of $500,000, it’s just slightly out of my budget.)
Alex Novak’s Vintage Works/Contemporary Works brings a wide selection of photography, from the 19th century onward, and this year my eye was struck by Charles Smerdon Roe’s “Untitled (Harvesters) from around 1890 and an anonymous photo from the same period of dragon boats on the Canton River in China. More modern works included two large prints by fashion photographer Horst P. Horst, “Odalisque I’ and “Round the Clock I.”
Another striking fashion work was Louise Dahl-Wolfe’s “Jean Patchett, Grenada, Spain, 1953,” on the wall at Staley-Wise.
One of my very favorite prints was found at Janet Sirmon Fine Art. Believing it at first to be a photo by Elliott Erwitt, it was actually a vintage print by Yale Joel, “Chihuahua and Pappagallo Shoes” from 1961. Not surprisingly, I also saw an Erwitt with a chihuahua at the Peter Fetterman Gallery.
In the category of photos not well known to me by well known photographers were Andre Kertesz’s “Dubo, Dubon, Dubonnet, Paris, 1934” at the Stephen Daiter Gallery, Lee Friedlander’s “Haverstraw, New York” from 1966 at the Robert Mann Gallery, Bill Brandt’s 1951 “Nude, Hampstead” at the Halsted Galery and Berenice Abbott’s “Automat, New York” from 1936 at Michael Shapiro Photographs. (I can still remember going to the automat when I was a kid, though it sadly closed many years ago.)
Perhaps my favorite from this category, though, was Rudolf Koppitz vintage silver print, “Nude Study, Vienna 1925” at Galerie Johannes Faber. I am much more familiar with Koppitz’s classic photo, ”Movement Study,” featuring three darkly clad women with one nude in front of them, and while there was a print of that one on the wall, too, the quality of this particular print was stunning and impressed me even more.
While I am personally drawn more to black & white photography than to color, I am always impressed by the color photography of Steve McCurry, evidenced here at the Peter Fetterman Gallery, and I found myself liking the amusing color imagery of Julie Blackmon at the Robert Mann Gallery.
Back to monochrome, I also liked two photographs by the French photographer Edouard Boubat, “Lella” from 1947 (printed later) at Scheinbaum and Russek Ltd, plus his untitled nude at Photographs Do Not Bend Gallery. Also from France were Willy Ronis’ “Place de la Concorde, Paris” at Gallery 19/21 and Guy Bourdin’s “Untitled, 1950s” at the Michael Hoppen Gallery.
All in all, as usual, there are just too many beautiful photographs to mention, so I will just continue by posting some of the photos I’ve mentioned above, along with some of my others from the show. Enjoy.