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Michael Eastman
at Gebert Contemporary, Santa Fe, New Mexico
Recommendation by Kathryn M Davis

Continuing through August 29, 2010

Known for his photographs of strikingly sculptural and heroic architectural compositions from around the world, Michael Eastman chose to keep his subjects close to home in St. Louis for his latest body of work. Shooting at the abandoned Globe warehouse and at Forest Park, this exhibition consists of two sets of subject matter: the gridded, begrimed windows from inside the Globe, and the lacy, brooding trees at the park. Both subjects display Eastman's signature theme of faded beauty taken for granted: the Blanche Dubois of an inner urban setting. The window pictures are most effective and the most like Eastman's previous work in that they manage to convey depth and weight despite the given two-dimensionality of windows. Each casement has its own particular cracks and exposed, peeling grout, its own filth and the fog of aged glass.
A self-taught photographer, Eastman has developed a new process, inaugurated here, in which he prints two nearly identical shots on layers of Plexiglas, resulting in pictures that are quite painterly for their vigor and mystery.

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