Cathedral of the Pines: An Interview with Gregory Crewdson

Cathedral of the Pines: An Interview with Gregory Crewdson

Above image: Gregory Crewdson, The Shed (detail), 2014. © Gregory Crewdson. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery.

In the exhibition Cathedral of the Pines, currently on view at The Photographers’ Gallery, Gregory Crewdson departs from his interest in uncanny suburban subjects and explores human relations within more natural environments. In images that recall nineteenth-century American and European paintings, Crewdson photographs figures posing within the small rural town of Becket, Massachusetts, and its vast surrounding forests, including the actual trail from which the series takes its title. Interior scenes charged with ambiguous narratives probe tensions between human connection and separation, intimacy and isolation.

Crewdson describes this project as ‘his most personal’, venturing to retrieve in the remote setting of the forest, a reminiscence of his childhood. The images in Cathedral of the Pines, located in the dystopian landscape of the anxious American imagination, create atmospheric scenes, many featuring local residents, and for the first time in Crewdson’s work, friends and family. In Woman at Sink, a woman pauses from her domestic chores, lost in thought. In Pickup Truck, Crewdson shows a nude couple in the flatbed of a truck in a dense forest—the woman seated, the man turned away in repose. Crewdson situates his disconsolate subjects in familiar settings, yet their cryptic actions—standing still in the snow, or nude on a riverbank—hint at invisible challenges. Precisely what these challenges are, and what fate awaits these anonymous figures, are left to the viewer’s imagination.

Crewdson’s careful crafting of visual suspense conjures forebears such as Diane Arbus, Alfred Hitchcock, and Edward Hopper, as well as the influence of Hollywood cinema and directors such as David Lynch. In Cathedral of the Pines, Crewdson’s persistent psychological leitmotifs evolve into intimate figurative dramas.

Visually alluring and often deeply disquieting, these tableaux are the result of an intricate production process: For more than twenty years, Crewdson has used the streets and interiors of small-town America as settings for photographic incarnations of the uncanny. Working with a large crew, he plans his images as meticulously as any movie director.

Interview with the curators: Feminist Avant-Garde of the 1970s

Interview with the curators: Feminist Avant-Garde of the 1970s

Feminist Avant–Garde of the 1970s, is an expansive exhibition comprising forty-eight international female artists and over 150 major works from the VERBUND COLLECTION in Vienna.

The exhibition highlights groundbreaking practices that shaped the feminist art movement and provides a timely reminder of the wide impact of a generation of artists. Alongside established practitioners such as VALIE EXPORT, Cindy Sherman, Francesca Woodman and Martha Rosler, the exhibition also provides a rare opportunity to discover the influential work of artists including Katalin Ladik, Nil Yalter, Birgit Jürgenssen and Sanja Iveković. Curator Gabriele Schor coined the term Feminist Avant-Garde to underline the pioneering achievements of these artists.

Focusing on photographs, collage works, performances, films and videos produced throughout the 1970s, the exhibition reflects a moment during which practices of emancipation, gender equality and civil rights protest movements became part of public discourse.

Operating across the public and personal realms – as well as using their own bodies as central motifs – these artists sought to address broad political issues and confront patriarchy and sexism in art and society. In doing so they created new, positively assertive female identities.

Feminist Avant-Garde of the 1970s is co-curated by Gabriele Schor, VERBUND COLLECTIONand Anna Dannemann, The Photographers’ Gallery.

Jack Latham’s Sugar Paper Theories
The PhotobookVideo

Jack Latham’s Sugar Paper Theories

Image: Jack Latham, Sugar Paper Theories.

Jack Latham (b. 1989, UK) is the winner of this year’s Bar Tur Photobook Award. Now in its second year this significant annual award offers an emerging photographer the opportunity to work with The Photographers’ Gallery and independent UK based publisher Here Press, to produce their first book to a value of £20,000.

The winner was announced at a special ceremony at The Photographers’ Gallery on Tuesday 1 December 2015 and the winning project will be published in September 2016.

Latham’s winning project Sugar Paper Theories traces an infamous true crime case in Iceland. Known as the Reykjavik Confessions, it involved the testimonies of six people who confessed to two murders but later argued they were suffering from false memory syndrome following prolonged interrogations and solitary confinement.

The four runners-up are Sebastián Bruno, Eugenio Grosso, Nikolas Ventourakis and Luisa Whitton, who will all receive £1,000 each towards the realisation of their proposed photobook project.

This Year’s Judges :

  • Brett Rogers, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery
  • Armon Bar-Tur, entrepreneur and philanthropist
  • Harry Hardie & Ben Weaver, co-publishers, Here Press
  • Celia Davies, Director, Photoworks
  • Chloe Dewe Mathews, artist
  • Cheryl Newman, Photography Editor
  • Hannah Watson, Director, Trolley Books
An Interview with Trevor Paglen on the occasion of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2016
Artist ProfileVideo

An Interview with Trevor Paglen on the occasion of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2016

Trevor Paglen (b. 1974, USA) is shortlisted for the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2016 for his exhibition The Octopus at Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, Germany (20 June – 30 August 2015).

Paglen’s project represents complex topics like mass surveillance, data collection, classified satellite and drone activities and the systems of power connected to them. His installation comprises of images of restricted military and government areas, skylines showing the flight tracks of passing drones, sculptural elements and research assembled in collaboration with scientist, amateur astronomers and human rights activists.

Through his work Paglen demonstrates that secrets cannot be hidden from view, but that their traces and structures are visible evidence in the landscape.

Seamless Transitions: An Interview with James Bridle
Digital ProgrammePhotography Science and TechnologyThe Digital ImageVideo

Seamless Transitions: An Interview with James Bridle

Seamless Transitions is a new commission by London based artist, writer and technologist James Bridle, currently exhibiting as part of The Photographers’ Gallery digital programme.

Bridle’s work engages with the invisible yet pervasive technologies that we encounter every day. Utilising a variety of platforms from software to social media, photography and installations, Bridle explores how technology both affects culture and reproduces and shapes political power.

“ …just as these image-making technologies structure our perception of the world, they can also allow us to see inside places and processes that would otherwise remain invisible.”

The Guardian

Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2014: Brett Rogers, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery, on this year’s nominees

Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2014: Brett Rogers, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery, on this year’s nominees

Now in its seventeenth year, the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2014 rewards a living photographer, of any nationality, for a specific body of work in an exhibition or publication format, which has significantly contributed to photography in Europe between 1 October 2012 and 30 September 2013.

This year’s finalists are Alberto Garcia-AlixJochen Lempert,Lorna Simpson and Richard Mosse.


Kate Bush, Curator
Jitka Hanzlová, Artist
Thomas Seelig, Director/Curator, Fotomuseum Winterthur
Anne-Marie Beckmann, Curator, Art Collection Deutsche Börse
Brett Rogers, Director of The Photographers’ Gallery, is the non-voting Chair.

The winner of the £30,000 Prize will be announced on Monday 12 May 2014.

Iain Sinclair – Ghosts of a Ghost: William Burroughs, time surgery and the death of the image

Iain Sinclair – Ghosts of a Ghost: William Burroughs, time surgery and the death of the image

In this video, recorded at The Photographers’ Gallery to accompany our exhibition of photographs by William S. Burroughs, Iain Sinclair presents a fragmentary consideration of the interplay of photography, sound recording, manipulated autobiography, interview and anecdote in the work of Burroughs.

Supported by the University of Edinburgh and The Leverhulme Trust.

Iain Sinclair has lived in (and written about) Hackney, East London, since 1969. His novels include Downriver (Winner of the James Tait Black Prize & the Encore Prize for the Year’s Best Second Novel), Radon DaughtersLandor’s Tower and, most recently, Dining on Stones (which was shortlisted for the Ondaatje prize). Non-fiction books, exploring the myth and matter of London, include Lights Out for the Territory, London Orbital and Edge of the Orison. In the ‘90s, Iain wrote and presented a number of films for BBC2’s Late Show and has, subsequently, co-directed with Chris Petit four documentaries for Channel 4; one of which, Asylum, won the short film prize at the Montreal Festival. He edited London, City of Disappearances, which was published in October 2006. Recently he has publishedHackney,That Rose-Red Empire (2009) and Ghostmilk (2011).