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Review: American Photo Illustration Exhibit at Keith de Lellis

Posted By Administration, Saturday, May 29, 2010
Updated: Thursday, December 19, 2013

DATE: May 29, 2010

 

The not so fine line between kitsch and art gets blurred repeatedly in this canny, diverting exhibition, "Artifice: Photo Illustration in America circa 1925-1960." The exhibit features staged and manipulated images by Anton Bruehl, Edward Steichen, George Hoyningen-Huene, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, and a slew of other successful editorial and advertising photographers.


While there's little subtlety involved in the product pitches (an early console radio appears to levitate before its astonished owner), their visual inventiveness covers a broad range of pre-Photoshop strategies, from rear projection to photomontage. Whether sophisticated or vulgar, these photographs set a lively precedent for Gregory Crewdson, Erwin Olaf, and other contemporary creators of photo-fictions.

From The New Yorker.

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