Jean-Michel Reed's project Introspective is both an introduction to new work - and a reflection on the power of images.
Support the production of art!
I have a show coming up February 4th, 2012 at the internationally known CEPA Gallery in Buffalo, New York and I am trying a new way of funding a show. All the work to be presented is for sale now at my cost (and in some cases below!) - my goal is just to have the show. All backers at the $75 dollar and up level will get a print from the show as their reward! We all win! I get to do my show and you get cheap art!
A little bit about the show:
The show, titled Introspective, is both an introduction to some of my work that I have not shown before, and also collectively a look at the place images hold in our world. The work presented will be from different distinct series, but they all relate in that all of my work is about images and photography. My photographs are not just photographs - on one level they are - but on a another they are about a history of photographs and how images construct history, the present and photographs themselves.
Briefly about the different series being presented:
Various Big Fires / Night Fires: Art in America referred to me as "the Weegee of arson" after seeing my work at the Burchfield-Penney in Buffalo, NY in 2010. These photographs are about many things to me: the spectacle of urban fires, the decline of the old American city (or America itself), the nature of disaster photography (these attempt to be beautiful, detached images, not injecting any sentimentality, human tragedy, photographer bias), and my love of 1970s American photography (Stephen Shore, Mitch Epstein, Joel Sternfeld, Bill Owens ...).
Housing Bubble: This series is sentimental and political. The series looks at the aftermath of the housing crisis. Unlike some other work being done on foreclosures (and there is a lot right now) - I started this work in 2007 and have focused on the interiors and discarded objects. I see them as portraits of people we do not see or know, but we can maybe imagine. As well, since it is popular to blame people in these situations currently - I want to remind viewers that these are people just like us and part of what is being left behind are memories.
American Romance: This is the newest body of work and it started during a trip to Maine in the fall of 2011. I was watching painters in Monhegan, Maine, a place that seems both lost in time and art. Generations of American painters have gone there to paint, Hopper, the Wyeth's, and now dozens and dozens painters and aspiring painters. Certainly the history of painting drives people to this island - painters who want to not only try and find a connection to the American masters, but to a place that seems only to have aged over time. It occurred to me that we all do this - we have a romance with America, with its history, what it is, and what it could be (as defined by history). Our monuments exist, like they have in all civilizations, to remind us of who we want to be by both remembering and constructing history.
Real Estate: I have been working on this idea for a few years and have finally started to develop the images. The images are all found images from the internet of homes from real estate web sites and free streaming porn. This is not to conflate pornography with real estate (naming things "porn" - disaster porn, real estate porn, etc. - desensitizes us to what porn actually is). This is a reflection on two things really, one how the internet is the ultimate tool of the voyeur - and two, how all images are meant to sell us things. Selling real estate is selling a lifestyle - a dream - a bigger house. Pornography also works in this way - it attempts to sell itself as glamorous but it is also selling glamor and wealth - girls and sex like this are attainable with wealth and a mansion. The measures of success are the same.
Time Tells a Different Story: These are both found images and my own photographs. They are completely unrelated except for the fact that they are photographs, and they are of things that we can make whatever we want. Family photographs without someone who knows who or what the image is of can mean anything. The photographs of mine are of what I call interstitial moments - photographs of things that really are nothing, that are placeless. The majority of our time (and of history) is spent in these moments where we are between things, in "wasted" time - where we are just anticipating whatever is next or hurrying to get to the next thing.
Stills from the Great American Picture Show: This work looks at the history of disaster images and how images have constructed both our ideas both of what this genre should look like, and our relationship to disaster in history. They are all found images, but are new prints from slides and negatives. I am interested in the image - not the artifact (an existing print with a secondary history). Images inform and make new images and somehow all of these images are already familiar - much like the fact that the collapse of the World Trade Center was unconsciously familiar. (There are no rewards from this series.)
So - pick your series and then come to the opening Saturday, February 4th at 7pm and pick out your newly acquired piece! If you are not in Buffalo, I'll mail your piece (I'll arrange shipping after the project closes with everyone individually). Thanks so much for supporting my project and this alternative way of buying art! I hope to produce some BONUS MATERIALS for all supporters depending on how much is raised! (I'll provide updates on that as the project progresses.) Thanks again!
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
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Pledge $10 or moreYou selected
4 backers Limited (21 left of 25)
Backers at the $10 level will receive a copy of Various Big Fires (2007) and a 10-pack of postcards from my installation at the Burchfield-Penney in 2010.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
5 backers Limited (20 left of 25)
Backers at the $25 level will receive L/I/F/T printed in an edition of 100 in 2011 - this 4 card set has the words Love, Is, Future, The printed on them to be arranged in any order desired. The piece was produced for Valentine's Day, but I was also thinking about history and the future and and what future means.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
3 backers Limited (22 left of 25)
Backers at the $50 level get Various Big Fires, L/I/F/T and a 25 pack of postcards!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $75 or moreYou selected
5 backers All gone!
Backers at the $75 level get edition #1 of one of the 5 Housing Bubble prints printed just for this show. Print size is 15x20 inches and they are produced in an edition of 5.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $100 or moreYou selected
5 backers Limited (1 left of 6)
Backers at this $100 level get edition #1 of one of the 6 prints from the series Time Tells a Different Story - these images, both found and my own images are a look at the many meanings of photographs (or more what we as viewers bring to photographs). Print size is 16x24 inches and they are printed in an edition of 5.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $125 or moreYou selected
6 backers All gone!
Backers at this $125 level will receive edition #1 of one of 6 prints from the series American Romance. This photographs are about American history - or our perceptions and romance with it. Print size is 17x24 inches and they are printed in an edition of 5. The photographs to date have been taken in Maine, Philadelphia and Washington D.C.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $125 or moreYou selected
1 backer Limited (3 left of 4)
Backers at the $125 level will receive edition #1 of one of 4 prints from the series Real Estate. These are all found images of homes from the internet, home that are either for sale of have been used in pornographic films. They are printed in an edition of 3 and print size varies, but is roughly 30x20 inches.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $400 or moreYou selected
2 backers Limited (2 left of 4)
Backers at the $400 dollar level will receive one of the 4 prints from the Night Fires and Various Big Fires series. Print size is 30x42 inches in an edition of 5 and these are framed prints.Estimated delivery:
- (16 days)