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Weston Exhibition Kicks Off Gallery's 2006-2007 Season

August 16, 2006

SELINSGROVE, (Pa.) – The Lore Degenstein Gallery at Susquehanna University will host a photography exhibition titled Edward Weston: Life Work from Friday, Sept. 8, through Friday, Oct. 13. An opening reception will be held in the gallery from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sept. 8. All gallery events are free and open to the public.

Edward Weston: Life Work is a 99-image survey of this great American artist, containing an outstanding grouping of vintage prints from all phases of Weston’s five-decade career. Previously unpublished masterpieces are interspersed with well-known signature images. A striking 1909 outdoor Pictorialist study of his wife, Flora, is perhaps Weston's first nude. A 1907 landscape features a cow skull in the Mojave Desert and precedes by thirty years his later interest in death in the desert. A smoky view of the Chicago River harbor from 1916 pays homage to Coburn and Stieglitz, and anticipates the urban modernism famously captured by Armco Steel, Ohio, 1922. Armco Steel marked Weston’s final break from the confines of Pictorialism and studio work, and signified the emergence of his sharply focused style.

“To survey chronologically his oeuvre is to witness a purposeful and heroic shelling away of subjective addenda, of all the trimming that, to the average observer, transmutes a photograph into a work of art,” wrote the Mexican painter Jean Charlot in the 1932 monograph.

In the mid-1920s Weston unleashed his new approach in Mexico with Tina Reciting, Heaped Black Ollas, and Excusado. Upon his return to California in 1927, Weston continued to experiment with pure form and disconcerting scale shifts in his long exposures of shells, peppers, mushrooms, radishes and kelp. These studies segue naturally into a remarkable set of sculptural nudes done in 1933 and 1934.

Weston loosened up his style considerably when he turned to the open landscape. This exhibition includes an important suite of six dune studies made near Oceano, Calif., from 1934 to 1946. In addition to landscapes and studies of desert detritus made with the support of a Guggenheim grant, portraits of prominent artistic and literary figures are also well represented. The chronological survey concludes with Weston's consummate final photograph, nicknamed The Dody Rocks, 1948.

Edward Weston: Life Work is organized and circulated by Curatorial Assistance Traveling Exhibitions, of Los Angeles, Calif. All works are courtesy of the Michael Mattis and Judith Hochberg Collection.

The Lore Degenstein Gallery brings art exhibitions to the members of Susquehanna University and its surrounding communities through continued support from the Charles B. Degenstein endowment. The gallery is open from noon to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. The gallery is closed on Mondays and university recesses.

Contact: Victoria Kidd


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