East/West [Gallery 206]

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East/West
Gallery 206 – On View
JoAnn Verburg
American, born 1950

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JoAnn Verburg
Thanksgiving, 2001
Six chromogenic prints each mounted to Plexiglas
Courtesy of Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

Patient observation and careful art scholarship are at the heart of JoAnn Verburg’s photographs. While her subjects vary from ancient olive trees to people’s faces, here she focuses on the intricacies and transcendent nature of an Italian landscape. Using a 5 x 7-inch camera, she employs selective focus to accentuate one part of a photograph while leaving other portions evocatively blurry. The multi-panel format suggests that seeing, like viewing cinema, is a process that occurs over time—we don’t see just one thing in a single moment.

That Verburg’s multi-panel approach recalls the folding screens on view in the museum’s Asian galleries is no accident. For years Verburg has been inspired by Japanese, Korean, and Chinese screens, and studied how images move from one panel to the next, their spaces shifting forward and back, the individual pictures seeming both independent and integrated. The natural world is in process, and both the Asian screens and these photographs give us simple structures and beautiful subjects that reflect dynamic changes. Careful observation of both nature and art makes our human experiences rich and full.

Web site: http://www.pacemacgill.com/joannverburg.html

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