No, we’re not trying to be cute nor clever, but Gregory Crewdsons’ photographs are huge (5 ft. x 7.5 ft) images and for once, there is a reason other than a current trend for the massive size.
[photopress:process080407_560.jpg,full,centered] Â© Gregory Crewdson – Beneath The Roses
His tableaus, currently on view at the Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills, are created with major production crews and equipment, resulting in a single moment that tells it’s own story.Working in the town of Pittsfield, Mass for the location work, Mr. Crewdson has imagined a world of hyper reality, where fog cuts the light to define itself and nary an element is out of focus.
His inhabitants never engage the camera’s eye but instead stare off into their own world, as directed by the photographer. Reminiscent of painter Edward Hopper, Crewdsons’ vastly more complex scenarios, take the detached inhabitants of Hoppers work out of the urban setting into a small town, multi-layered, almost Twin Peak-sian, story.
[photopress:gc_gagosian.jpg,full,centered] Opening night
The photographs blanket the walls, yet invite the viewer to come up close and detect the detail. There is a visceral feel to the extreme focus, accomplished by multiple exposures composited, that some of the first nighters at the exhibit found oddly disturbing. As if the photographer wasn’t giving the full direction for your gaze. It seems that point, though, lets you look at each minute quadrant, almost like the grid on the focusing screen of a view camera.
Yes, he shoots these massive one scene stories with an 8×10 view camera.
And about 40 crew members.
I wonder if this young collector knew that the images were topping 6 figures.
And Gregory has quite a following in the film community. Jack Black showed up to check it all out.
But here is some of the really big news: all of the prints were made with an Epson 11880, on Epson Premium Luster paper.
Archival InkJet prints. 58 -1/2 x 89-1/2 inches. Limited to an edition of 6. For over $100k USD.
Seems like quite a breakthrough over here. Does this signal the end of the supposed stigma of digital prints as fine art?
At those prices it should. Epson is currently producing a behind the scenes video on the production of these prints. We’ll let you when when that is posted.
Now everyone is curious how much it costs to produce these images. The word is that 3 of the galleries selling the work, finance it, along with help from manufacturers who lend an equipment hand.
Remember that there are many of the images that are created in the studio. Full on sets, fake snow, total control.
Simple, no one is talking.
The point though, is not the cost, but surprisingly, the amazing imagery. Did his work always have the same production budgets?
No, but his vision has always been realized. Funny how you create with the tools you have.
Something we also love is the size of his latest book, Beneath The Roses. Huge, like the images. Even includes sketches of the lighting set-ups. Very revealing.
If you were ever tempted to look at a photographs and say,” I could do that”, you won’t. This is a true master of the art who who respects the medium and becomes one with it, as he weaves his dark, and sometimes disturbing, images on a very large canvas. Or inkjet paper.
And he is always quite vocal of the partnership with one Rick Sands, his director of photography. After working together for 11 years , they have developed a shorthand that Crewdson can’t or won’t do without.
Now showing: May 3 – Jun 7, 2008
456 North Camden Dr.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
photos 2,3,4,Â© Damon Webster