Davis Cone, American, born 1950. State-Autumn Evening, 2002. Acrylic on canvas. 26 1/2 × 46 1/2 inches (67.3 × 118.1 cm). Collection of John Gordon.

From Lens to Eye to Hand: Photorealism 1969 to Today

April 21, 2018 - August 12, 2018

Hodge Galleries Henry Gallery

Since the invention of photography in the mid-19th century, artists have used photographs as both a tool and an inspiration for their work; but the Photorealists were the first to translate information from one medium to another unapologetically. In a period where abstraction was dominating the art world, these artists presented viewers with the most commonplace subject matter that mimicked the most popular type of image—the photograph. 

Some artists elaborated on the hyperreal elements of a photograph by enhancing every detail, while others faithfully re-created the blurring that occurs in photographs with a shallow depth of field. Still others experimented with cropping to create paintings that were reminiscent of snapshots. This exhibition brings together key works from public and private collections in a broad survey of this movement. It features paintings dating from the late 20th century to the present, illuminating the very definition of Photorealism from its beginning up to today. A catalogue accompanies this exhibition.

This exhibition was organized by the Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York.

The exhibition, From Lens to Eye to Hand: Photorealism 1969 to Today, is made possible, in part, by the generous leadership support of Louis K. and Susan P. Meisel, Barbara Slifka, Linda Hackett and Melinda Hackett/ CAL Foundation, Sandy and Stephen Perlbinder, Jonathan Novak Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, The Muriel F. Siebert Foundation, and Arlene Kaufman and Sanford Baklor. Public Funding provided by Suffolk County.


From Lens to Eye to Hand:
Photorealism 1969 to Today

by Terrie Sultan

(paperback; 128 pages; $39.95) 

This generously illustrated book examines Photorealism in contemporary art from its roots in the late 1960s to today. Photorealism reintroduced straightforward representation into an art world dominated by Pop Art, Minimalism, Land Art, and Performance Art. Often misunderstood as being overtly traditional, artists at the vanguard of this important movement were trailblazers. Use of the camera as the foundation of painterly expression is common today, but in the 1970s Photorealists were embarking on a groundbreaking way of seeing and depicting the world. Drawing on major public and private collections, the book features works by the masters of Photorealism. Along with numerous illustrations, the book also includes an introductory essay by noted artist and writer Richard Kalina, and an in-depth essay by Terrie Sutlan, focusing on photorealistic watercolors and works on paper.

From the Exhibition

  • Robert Bechtle, American, born 1932. '73 Malibu, 1974. Oil on canvas. 48 × 69 inches (121.9 × 175.3 cm). Meisel Family Collections, New York

  • Audrey Flack, American, born 1931. Wheel of Fortune, 1977–1978. Acrylic and oil on canvas. 96 × 96 inches (243.8 × 243.8 cm). Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, New York. Gift of Louis K. and Susan P. Meisel, 2016.20 

  • Ralph Goings, American, born 1928. Miss Albany Diner, 1993. Oil on canvas. 48 × 72 inches (121.9 × 182.9 cm). Heiskell Family Collection 

  • Richard McLean, American, born 1934. Western Tableau with Rhodesian Ridgeback (Trails West), 1993. Oil on linen. 48 × 70 inches (121.9 × 177.8 cm). Meisel Family Collections, New York 

  • John Salt, English, born 1937. Albuquerque Wreck Yard (Sandia Auto Electric), 1972. Oil on canvas. 48 × 72 inches (121.9 × 182.9 cm). Meisel Family Collections, New York