Deborah Bell Photographs brings in the end of the year with an examination of Marcia Resnick’s beginning. Before Resnick’s more famous works, she was graduating from Cal Arts and still finding her style. Conceptions: Vintage Photographs 1974-1976, focuses on this period.
Engaging with the idea of the artist’s book, she embarked in 1974 on a series of photographs called See – “photographs of people photographing places.” In an interview with Alex Sweetman at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1978, published in Exposure (16:2), she said:
I found that when I went to tourist spots, there would be people looking at places and they’d always get in the way and I’d always see them from behind. That was the whole [Maurice] Merleau-Ponty kind of philosophical thing: being in front and being behind – like being inside yourself. I was interested also at that time in the iconography of body gestures. How you could read, from the way a person’s body was from the back, almost as much, or as much, as you could from looking at a face in a portrait.
In her now-classic 1974 series See Changes, using one photograph from See, Resnick shows her Cal Arts classmate James Welling perched on the edge of the Grand Canyon and, by manipulating and altering the photograph with paint, pencil and collage in numerous variations, continues to explore her earliest interest in the nature and presence of the photographic print.
Marcia Resnick was born in Brooklyn in 1950. She received her BFA from The Cooper Union, New York City, in 1972, and an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, CA, in 1973. Resnick’s photographs can be found in numerous institutional collections, including the George Eastman Museum, Rochester; J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; The Jewish Museum, New York; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; The Morgan Library & Museum, New York; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, MO; The New York Public Library; Ryerson Image Center, Toronto, ON; and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
The exhibit is now open for viewing until November 5th.
For More Information: Deborah Bell Photographs