David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of the American photographer William Eggleston’s medium- and large-format photographs from the 1970s, many of which have never been exhibited before. On view at the gallery’s Hong Kong location, this exhibition marks the artist’s debut solo presentation in Greater China.

Over the course of nearly six decades, Eggleston has established a singular pictorial style that deftly combines vernacular subject matter with an innate and sophisticated understanding of color, form, and composition. His vividly saturated photographs transform the ordinary into distinctive, poetic images that eschew fixed meaning. A pioneer of color photography, Eggleston helped elevate the medium to the art form that it is recognized as today. His watershed 1976 solo exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, curated by John Szarkowski, would come to herald the medium’s acceptance within the art-historical canon.

Throughout the 1970s, Eggleston worked with a variety of cameras and photographic formats. In addition to using 35mm Canon and Leica cameras, he also photographed in medium and large formats. Historically, larger negatives and cameras had primarily been used for traditional portraiture or formalist photography such as that of the modernists Imogen Cunningham and Edward Weston. Eggleston began exploring these formats, which were less popular in the snapshot, street-photography ethos of the 1960s and 1970s, for the high level of detail they offer, spearheading their use with color film and using them to further his investigation of the distinctive character of the American visual and material landscape. As Eggleston notes, “I was thinking about pictures made in portrait studios, mostly before my time, with the 5 x 7 camera, prints big enough to hand retouch and I was thinking: I want to do a series in that format because of the incredible detail.”1 Capturing the storefronts, restaurants, homes, cars, and people of the cities, towns, and settings to which he traveled, these richly detailed images reveal the breadth and individuality of everyday life in often overlooked locations. The photographs provide a captivating portrayal of the artist and his encounters—an image of a street light framed against the sky or one of cars resting in a parking lot are as much portraits of these places as works depicting local individuals posing for Eggleston on the street.

The photographs also illustrate Eggleston’s singular ability to capture the unique qualities of color, surface, and light. In one image, brightly colored gas pumps and a pastel green sign with red Coca-Cola logos stand out against the pale, sun-bleached siding and oil-slicked asphalt of a service station. In another work, a plastic sailfish—with an arching blue fin—hangs in a restaurant and contrasts with the shiny wood paneling of the wall and tables while playing off the yellow and green vinyl of a group of tucked-in, padded chairs. The powerful yet diffuse Southern light pervades these images. Photographs taken at dawn and dusk contain a soft radiant glow that calls to mind the remarkable luminosity contained in the paintings of Vermeer, while those shot during the height of the afternoon visualize the Southern sun’s unrepentant glare. As Michael Almereyda writes of Eggleston’s large-format work, the artist applies “remarkable resources—an unerring eye for detail and gesture, an intimate sense of form—to produce images that remain joltingly fresh, lucid, indelible. Reviewing this work, it feels possible to gain entry to a vanished time while looking backward into photography’s future.”2

William Eggleston was born in 1939 in Memphis, Tennessee, where he lives today. William Eggleston: The Democratic Forest, an exhibition of works drawn from the artist’s encyclopedic project, marked his first solo show at David Zwirner New York in 2016. 2 ¼, an exhibition of Eggleston’s medium-format, square photographs, was presented in 2019 at David Zwirner London. In 2007, several of the images in the present exhibition were featured in 5 x 7, a monograph published by Twin Palms of the artist’s large-format photographs.

Since the 1970s, Eggleston’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at prominent institutions worldwide. Important solo presentations were held at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, in 1990; Barbican Gallery, London, in 1992 (traveled to Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark; Museum Folkwang, Essen; and Fotomuseum Winterthur); documenta IX, Kassel, in 2002; and Museum Ludwig, Cologne, in 2003 (traveled to Museu Serralves, Porto; Nasjonalmuseet – Museet for samtidskunst, Oslo; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Albertina, Vienna; and Dallas Museum of Art). In 2008, a major career-spanning survey, William Eggleston: Democratic Camera, Photographs and Videos 1961–2008, was organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and Haus der Kunst in Munich; it subsequently traveled to the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Art Institute of Chicago; and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, among other institutions.

More recent solo exhibitions have included those held at Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris, in 2009 (traveled to Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, and Hasselblad Foundation, Gothenburg, Sweden); The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, in 2013; and Foam Fotografiemuseum, Amsterdam, in 2017. In 2018, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, in New York, presented William Eggleston: Los Alamos, a solo exhibition featuring a landmark gift to the museum by Jade Lau of the artist’s notable portfolio Los Alamos. Scheduled to open in summer and fall 2020, the solo presentation In Focus: Election Eve at the Getty Center in Los Angeles will feature Eggleston’s two-volume photography book made as the country readied for the 1976 presidential race.    

Eggleston received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in 1975 and has been the recipient of numerous notable awards, including the International Center of Photography Infinity Award for Lifetime Achievement (2004) and the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication, République Française (Order of Arts and Letters of the French Republic) (2016), among others. The Aperture Foundation honored Eggleston in October 2016. Work by the artist is held in major international museum collections.

In 2019 the Eggleston Art Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the study and preservation of Eggleston’s work, was founded in the artist’s hometown of Memphis, Tennessee. The Foundation houses the Eggleston Archive and serves as a resource for research about the artist, his art, and his subjects.    

For all press inquiries, contact
Julia Lukacher +1 212 727 2070 [email protected]
Tong Hu +852 9769 4819 [email protected]

1 Eggleston quoted in Michael Almereyda, “Forever Changes: Eggleston in ‘73,” William Eggleston: 5 x 7 (Santa Fe, New Mexico: Twin Palms Publishers, 2007), n.p.
2 Ibid, n.p.

威廉·埃格爾斯頓(William Eggleston)
2020年9月10日 - 10月17日
香港中環皇后大道中80號
H Queen’s 5-6樓

卓納畫廊欣然呈現美國攝影師威廉·埃格爾斯頓(William Eggleston, b. 1939)中畫幅與大畫幅的攝影作品展。這些作品拍攝於1970年代,其中許多作品此前從未展出。展覽將在畫廊的香港空間舉辦,這也是藝術家在大中華地區的首次個展。

在近六十年的歷程中,埃格爾斯頓建立起了自己獨特的圖像風格,他將帶有地方特色的主題同他與生俱來對色彩、形式和構圖的細膩理解融合在一起。他生動飽和的畫面將平凡的日常轉化為與眾不同的詩意圖像,而又免於陷入固化的解讀。作為彩色攝影的先驅,埃格爾斯頓幫助提升了攝影媒介的地位,使其成為今日廣受認可的藝術形式。 1976年,他在紐約現代藝術博物館舉辦了極具分水嶺意義的個展,展覽由約翰·扎科夫斯基(John Szarkowski)策展,預示了攝影媒介將在日後被納入藝術史的經典之中。

在整個1970年代,埃格爾斯頓廣泛地使用了各種相機和不同規格的菲林底片。除了35毫米的佳能和徠卡相機之外,他還拍攝了許多中、大畫幅的作品。在歷史上,尺寸較大的負片及相機主要用於傳統肖像或形式主義攝影的拍攝,像是伊莫金·坎寧安(Imogen Cunningham)和愛德華·韋斯頓(Edward Weston)等現代主義攝影師們的作品。 1960和70年代,快拍照片與街頭攝影成為時代風潮,而中大畫幅相對少人問津。埃格爾斯頓在當時開始對它們進行探索,因為它們能展示質感豐富的細節。他還率先將中大畫幅配合彩色菲林共同使用,並藉此進一步探究美國獨特的視覺及物質景觀。正如埃格爾斯頓所說:“我當時在思考拍攝於肖像工作室中的照片,它們大部分出現在我所處的時代之前,使用5 x 7畫幅的相機,圖像的尺寸足夠大,從而可以進行手工調試和修飾,而我在想:因為那種讓人難以置信的細節,我希望用這種畫幅來創作一個系列。” 1 這些細膩豐富的圖像捕捉了他所到訪過的店鋪、餐廳、住所、汽車,還有城市、小鎮中的人們及他們身處的環境,作品在許多常被忽視的場景中展現出日常生活的廣度與個性。這些照片為藝術家和他所邂逅的事物提供了迷人的描繪——無論是以天空為背景的路燈,還是停車場上靜止的汽車,它們既是這些地方的肖像,同時也刻畫了埃格爾斯頓在街頭遇到的、那些願意出鏡的當地人。

這些照片還反映出埃格爾斯頓擅於捕捉物件的色彩、表面、光線等特質的獨特能力。在其中一幅作品中,一個壁板褪色、瀝青地面滿是油污的服務站,脫穎而出地讓觀者看到色彩鮮豔的加油泵、粉綠色的標牌和紅色的“可口可樂”標誌。另一幅作品中,帶著藍色魚鰭的塑料旗魚裝飾物懸掛於餐廳,與室內光潔的木質牆面和桌面形成鮮明對比,此外還襯托出黃綠色乙烯基材質的軟墊座椅。美國南部強力刺眼而又四處彌散的光線遍布於這些圖像之上。在黎明和黃昏時刻拍攝的照片,散發出柔和的光,讓人想起維米爾(Vermeer)繪畫中獨有的光感,而在午後拍攝的照片則顯現出南部陽光的猛烈和暈眩。正如邁克爾·阿爾梅瑞達(Michael Almereyda)在提及埃格爾斯頓大畫幅作品時所寫的那樣,藝術家發揮自己“非凡的才能——細緻入微的眼力、親密的形式感——從而創作出持久新鮮的、簡明的、令人難忘的圖像。回看這些創作,讓人覺得有可能進入一段已逝的時光之中,同時能通過反觀看到攝影的未來。” 2


威廉·埃格尔斯顿(William Eggleston)1939年出生于田纳西州孟菲斯,并现居于此。2016年,《威廉·埃格尔斯顿:民主森林》于卓纳画廊纽约空间举办,展出了艺术家百科全书式项目中的作品,这是他在画廊的首次个展。2019年,呈现埃格尔斯顿中画幅方片摄影作品的展览《2 ¼》举办于卓纳画廊伦敦空间。2007年,此次展览中的部分作品曾被悉数收录于由Twin Palms出版的《5x7》,这是一本有关艺术家大画幅作品的专著。

自1970年代以来,埃格尔斯顿便在世界各地的知名机构中举办个展。此前的重要个展曾举办于:华盛顿特区的科科伦美术馆,1990年;伦敦的巴比肯艺术中心,1992年(后巡展至丹麦胡姆勒拜克的路易斯安纳现代艺术博物馆、德国埃森的弗柯望博物馆、瑞士温特图尔摄影博物馆);第11届卡塞尔文献展,2002年;科隆的路德维希博物馆,2003年(后巡展至葡萄牙波尔图的塞拉维斯当代艺术博物馆、挪威奥斯陆的国立博物馆-当代艺术博物馆、丹麦胡姆勒拜克的路易斯安纳现代艺术博物馆、旧金山现代艺术博物馆、维也纳阿尔贝蒂娜博物馆、达拉斯艺术博物馆)。2008年,纽约惠特尼美国艺术博物馆和慕尼黑艺术之家美术馆共同组织了艺术家重要的职业回顾专题展《威廉·埃格尔斯顿:民主的相机、照片和视频 1961-2008年》;展览随后巡展至华盛顿特区的科科伦美术馆、芝加哥艺术博物馆及洛杉矶郡艺术博物馆等机构。

艺术家的近期个展还包括:巴黎卡地亚当代艺术基金会,2009年(后巡展至东京原美术馆和瑞典哥德堡哈苏基金会);纽约大都会艺术博物馆,2013年;以及阿姆斯特丹Foam摄影博物馆,2017年。2018年,纽约大都会艺术博物馆为其举办了个展《威廉·埃格尔斯顿:洛斯阿拉莫斯》,其中呈现了由刘秀融(Jade Lau)捐赠给博物馆的艺术家的著名摄影项目《洛斯阿拉莫斯》。此外,计划于2020年夏秋之际开幕的个展《聚焦:大选之夜》将在位于洛杉矶的盖蒂中心举办,展览将呈现埃格尔斯顿两卷本的摄影书,其中收录了许多他拍摄于1976年美国总统大选的照片。

埃格尔斯顿曾在1975年获得美国国家艺术基金会研究奖金,此外还获得了诸多重要奖项,包括:国际摄影中心“无限奖”之终身成就奖(2004)、法兰西共和国文化交流部颁发的艺术与文学勋章(2016)等等。2016年10月,埃格尔斯顿获得了光圈基金会授予的荣誉。艺术家的作品被珍藏于诸多重要的国际博物馆馆藏之中。

2019年,埃格尔斯顿艺术基金会(Eggleston Art Foundation)在艺术家的家乡田纳西州孟菲斯成立,这是一家致力于研究并保存埃格尔斯顿艺术作品的非营利机构。基金会拥有珍贵的“埃格尔斯顿档案”(Eggleston Archive),将为艺术家及其艺术和创作题材提供研究资料。
媒體垂詢
Julia Lukacher +1 212 727 2070 [email protected]
Tong Hu +852 9769 4819 [email protected]

 

1 埃格爾斯頓引語出自邁克爾·阿爾梅瑞達(Michael Almereyda)的《永恆的變化:73年的埃格爾斯頓》,收錄於《埃格爾斯頓:5 × 7》(新墨西哥州聖塔菲:Twin Palms Publishers出版,2007年),未標註頁碼。
2同上,未標註頁碼。

Image: William Eggleston, Untitled, c. 1973–1978 (detail)

 

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