Thursday, October 27, 2016

Anthony Hernandez at San Francisco MoMA

Anthony Hernandez, Discarded #50, 2014

It was a treat, to say the least, to get to see the Anthony Hernandez retrospective at San Francisco MoMA. The show spans Hernandez's lengthy career from his early street photography to his current way of seeing - spare, large format images devoid of human presence yet loaded with meaning.

SF MoMA say this about the show: Anthony Hernandez is the first retrospective to honor the more than 45-year career of this major American photographer. Featuring approximately 160 photographs — many never shown before — the exhibition includes a remarkably varied body of work united by its formal beauty and its subtle consideration of contemporary social issues. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Anthony Hernandez developed his own individual style of street photography, one attuned to the desolate allure and sprawling expanses of his hometown. Over the course of his career, he has deftly moved from black-and-white to color photography, from 35mm to large-format cameras, and from the human figure to the landscape to abstracted detail. Highlights from the exhibition include black-and-white photographs from the early 1970s taken on the streets of downtown L.A., color pictures made on Rodeo Drive in the mid-1980s, and selections from his critically acclaimed series Landscapes for the Homeless, completed in 1991. Although Hernandez has turned his lens on other cities — including Rome, Italy, and various American locales — Los Angeles, and especially the regions inhabited by the working class, the poor, and the homeless, has been his most enduring subject.

The exhibition runs until January 1st next year and it's a must see. if you are in San Francisco next week, on Thursday November 3,  there is a chance to hear Anthony Hernandez in conversation with Jeff Wall. You will find details on the SF MoMA site HERE.

And don't overlook the stunning exhibition catalogue that supports the show. Hardcover, 280 pages, with contributions from Robert Adams, Lewis Baltz, Erin O’Toole, and Ralph Rugoff.

Anthony Hernandez, Forever #74, 2011

Anthony Hernandez, Landscapes for the Homeless #1, 1988

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