Pictures of Pigment
February 14 – March 28, 2009
James Harris Gallery is pleased to present our first solo exhibition of photographs by Vik Muniz.
Working within the syntax of photography, Muniz creates work that is not just simple photographs. In his Pictures of Pigment, the artist carefully reconstructs well-known paintings by carefully piling up layers of brilliant powdered pigment onto a flat surface. Once the construction is complete, it is photographed. Although the resulting photographic image is the endgame of the artist’s process, it is also the making of the object that reveals the core of the the artist’s practice.
This exhibition consists of three large scale photographs based on paintings by Gustave Courbet, Frederic E. Church and Grandma Moses. From a distance, the images appear as photographic copies. It is only upon closer inspection is the pure grains of color reveal the magic of the artist’s handmade image. The series reiterates Vik’s recurring theme that seeing is believing.
Vik Muniz was born in 1961 in Sao Paolo, Brazil, and lives and works in Brooklyn, NY and Sao Paolo. The artist has had solo exhibitions at the Henry Art Gallery in 2001 and at the Seattle Art Museum in 2006. His work is included in current and upcoming exhibitions at The Museum of Modern art in Rio de Janiero, the Guangzhou Triennial in China, the Gana Art Gallery in Seoul Korea, and the Tokyo Wonder Site in Japan.