Saturday, June 11, 2011

Not so happy endings...Edward Mapplethorpe: The Variations, Foley Gallery NYC

Edward Mapplethorpe: The Variations, exhibiting at Foley Gallery through June 18, 2011

Edward Mapplethorpe's latest body of work, The Variations, inspired by Glenn Gould's interpretation of Bach's Goldberg Variations, reveals his growth as an artist, leaving his title of photographer in the wake. The show is a must see, but there are just two weekends left, as the exhibition ends on June 18th. 

Edward Mapplethorpe: The Variations, Installation View, Foley Gallery ( Photo Credit: Temporarily Unknown)

I've happily watched Edward's work evolve over the years. I'm very fond of his portraits, especially the baby portraits and nudes and over the last 10 years his work has changed dramatically, pushing the boundaries of photography while working in and out of the darkroom, the work is now about process and abstraction, though I see his perfection, sensitive touch and eye for detail; which has been consistent through out. 

Edward Mapplethorpe: Baby Portrait

For 21 years my inspiration, occasional mentor and one of my dearest, closest friends, I met Edward on my first visit to New York City. He and my soon-to-be husband had met previously through a mutual friend. It was 1990 and it was the way New York should be seen. I cried in Washington Square Park before the taxi ride to the airport. I remember saying I didn't need anything from home, NYC was home now, why can't we just stay. Within a year, we did return and Edward opened up his loft to us until we could establish ourselves.

I had the privilege to video a few of The Variations come to life, with a bird's eye view I watched as Edward drew with the fluidity of a conductor's hand gesture with color-less chemicals on traditional B&W photographic paper to achieve abstract images with multitudes of metallic and color tonalities, it absolutely blew me away.

The Variations, still from video, March 2011

The Variations, still from video, March 2011
The Variations, still from video, March 2011

Edward Mapplethorpe interviewed by Katja Schmolka for Zip Magazine regarding his current exhibition, The Variations

I wasn't aware of Glenn Gould or The Goldberg Variations, if you aren't either here's a video extract.

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