February 6 - March 14, 2009
Gladstone Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of works by American photographer Roe Ethridge. Combining the pre-fabricated slickness of stock photography with a trenchant conceptual view of its construction, Ethridge queries the fault lines between creating imagery and capturing the world. As Kate Bush said in the pages of Artforum, “As technically adept as a commercial photographer yet as thoughtful as a Conceptualist about photography’s role and meaning in the modern world, Ethridge believes the ubiquity of the photograph and the instantaneity of its transmission and reception in this age of increasing ‘ecstatic communication’ is to be embraced rather than mourned.”
For this exhibition, Ethridge has returned to a studio-based approach after the international location shooting for his last project “Rockaway.” Whether composing landscapes from his Brooklyn window or working with models, Ethridge’s measured conceptualism blurs the editorial aspects of each shot with the specificity of his own photographic practice: Obstructions on the window of his studio ground the almost postcard-perfect shots with the specificity of his view, while models lean on tripods labeled with the location of the shoot never allowing consumer thrall to overshadow his composition. In this manner, Ethridge purposefully weaves the haphazardness of everyday life into each photograph, reminding the viewer of the slippage between the fantasy of imagery and the reality of its construction.
Born in 1969 in Miami, Florida. Roe Ethridge studied photography in Atlanta, Georgia before leaving the southern states to work in New York. His photographs have appeared in numerous group exhibitions, including “Photographers on Photography” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; 2008 Whitney Biennial; “The Americans,” The Barbican Center, London; Greater New York, Museum of Modern Art/P.S. 1, 2000. In 2005 the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, mounted a solo presentation of his work.