Mitch Epstein, Clouds #81, New York City, 2015
From October 4th to March 31st 2018
Science Museum, Londres
From October 12th to November 19th 2017
Biennale FOTO/INDUSTRIA, Bologna
From June 03rd to September 17th 2017
Musée Photographique de Mougins
Exposition du 17/03/17 au 06/05/17
Galerie Les filles du calvaire
Born in 1952 in Holyoke, Massachusetts, USA
He lives and works in New York
Mitch Epstein is a fine-art photographer who helped pioneer fine-art color photography in the 1970s. His work has been exhibited and published extensively in the United States and Europe. Numerous major museums have collected his photographs, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum, and Whitney Museum of American Art, The J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, and the Tate Modern in London. His ten books include American Power, for which he won the Prix Pictet (2011) and Family Business, for which he won a Guggenheim Fellowship and the Krazna-Krausz Photography Book Award (2004).
For more than four decades, Epstein’s photographs have illuminated the culture and landscape of the United States. They have primarily explored the concept of American-ness and the interplay between human society and the natural world. In his recent pictures (New York Arbor, Rocks and Clouds), Epstein has also investigated the impact of time—on people, nature, and human-made objects; also how time affects an artist’s process. Epstein’s work distinguishes itself by its pictorial layering of deep space and its convergence of the conceptual and documentary.
ISBN : 978-3-95829-160-7
In his new series, Mitch Epstein investigates the meaning of time by photographing rocks that last millions of years and clouds that evaporate before our eyes. These large-format black-and-white pictures examine society’s complex relationship to nature, a theme Epstein has explored in previous work, including his acclaimed tree pictures (New York Arbor, 2013).
The way the sky and ground can mirror one another intrigued ancient Chinese painters, as well as modern earthwork artists and the Surrealists, all of whom inspired this project. Epstein draws attention to the sculptural quality of New York City’s clouds, bedrock, and architecture—which, at its most elemental, is made from rock. Cloud wedges engulf a cargo ship, buildings recall constructivist paintings, and erratics are imposing elders in the middle of a park or sidewalk. Rocks and Clouds suggests society’s inability to control time and tame nature. While it seems impossible to make a fresh picture of New York, Epstein gives us a surprising portrait of it.
ISBN : 978-3-86930-581-3
Mitch Epstein’s new work is a series of photographs of the idiosyncratic trees that inhabit New York City. These pictures underscore the importance of trees to urban life and their complex relationship to their human counterparts. Rooted in New York’s sidewalks, parks, and cemeteries, some trees grow wild, some are contortionists adapting to constrictive surroundings, while others are pruned into prize specimens. As urban development closes in on them, surprisingly, New York’s trees continue to thrive.
From 2011 to 2012, Epstein explored New York’s five boroughs in search of remarkable trees, often returning to photograph the same trees through the changing seasons and light. Many of these trees, Epstein learnt, were planted in one context—a farm or nursery, for instance—and had survived to be part of another, a city street or public garden; and most will likely outlive us to find their habitat continue to change. The cumulative effect of these photographs is to invert people’s usual view of their city: trees no longer function as background, but instead dominate the human life and architecture around them.
ISBN : 9783869302249
“Berliners have chosen to leave traces of the worst of themselves in their architecture and landscape. They have understood what a largely amnesiac America has not: reform relies on memory.”–Mitch Epstein
In 2008 Mitch Epstein won the Berlin Prize in Arts and Letters and was awarded a six-month residency at the American Academy in Berlin. Epstein proudly accepted the offer and initially planned to read and reflect in the academy’s comfortable surroundings. But he could not ignore the call of contemporary Berlin for long. As a Jewish-American whose relatives had died in the Holocaust, Epstein set out to confront this past by photographing the remnants of Berlin’s war and postwar histories. The resulting images–including the Sachsenhausen concentration camp, fashion billboards at Checkpoint Charlie, the Jewish Memorial at Potsdammer Platz and the Dalai Lama speaking at the Brandenburg Gate–reveal Berlin’s present to be a fraught accumulation of the layers of its past.
Christoph Schreier, Stephan Berg et Gisela Parak
ISBN : 978-3-7757-2784-6
Mitch Epstein (*1952 in Holyoke, Massachusetts) numbers among America’s outstanding contemporary photographers. This publication examines the development of his oeuvre on the basis of two very different series of photographs. Recreation—American Photographs (1973–88) represents traditional American Street Photography and depicts everyday situations, quintessential testimony to life in the United States in the seventies and eighties. The open nature of a pluralistic society, one that decades later seems to have lost its fortuity, is documented in the randomness of the encounters. This is implied in the title of the second photoseries American Power, which Epstein began in 2003. It draws attention to one of the major power conglomerates in America, the energy industry, one that intervenes not only in society, but in nature as well, transforming them both in the process. Cooling towers and refineries dominate the images, breaking all rules of proportion and degrading everything else around them to the status of insignificant marginalia.
ISBN : 978-3-86521-924-4
In American Power, Mitch Epstein investigates notions of power, both electrical and political. His focus is on energy – how it gets made, how it gets used, and the ramifications of both. From 2003 to 2008, he photographed at and around sites where fossil fuel, nuclear, hydroelectric, wind, and solar power are produced in the United States. The resulting photographs contain Epstein’s signature complex wit, surprising detail, and formal rigor. These pictures illuminate the intersection between American society and American landscape. Here is a portrait of early 21st century America, as it clings to past comforts and gropes for a more sensible future. In an accompanying essay, Epstein discusses his method, and how making these photographs led him to think harder about the artist’s role in a country teetering between collapse and transformation.
ISBN : 3865212816
Widely acknowledged as one of the world’s most distinguished art photographers, here, for the first time, Epstein has gathered his photographs together into a book that presents the span of his career. Mitch Epstein: Work allows readers to trace the evolution of his formal and thematic concerns. We see how his aesthetic views, photographic tools, and politics have transformed and influenced one another over time. This book offers a look at each of Epstein’s major projects — “Common Practice” (1973-89); “Vietnam” (1992-95); “The City” (1995-98); “Family Business” (2000-03), and his current, ongoing “American Power.” His early work on the theme of recreation is given its most natural yet unexpected configuration: images from the United States are mixed with those from other parts of the world. A short essay by the artist or an excerpt from his previously published writings orients each chapter. The book includes a DVD of his film, “Dad.” Many of the pictures here have never been seen before, let alone published. For Epstein fans and for those who would like an introduction to the artist’s work, this book is a necessary addition to their library.
ISBN : 3865210848
Ordinary things here startle, while the extraordinary appears at perfect ease in the world. These pictures, made in the 1970s and 80s, offer a window into the beginning and breadth of Mitch Epstein’s career. Most of these photographs are previously unpublished–culled from 15 years of work that addresses the theme of American recreation. Epstein’s interpretation of leisure in the United States is characteristically subtle, ranging and sharp-witted. In Recreation, teenage girls abandon a baby to fondle a snake; children sleep naked on a car in an open campground–people stake their private ground in public, if only for a moment, during which Epstein’s camera finds them. Gesture gives many of these photographs their pulse: tender hand, strained shoulder, swiveled hip. It isn’t the fact of thirteen year olds smoking that will astound viewers, but the grace and knowledge in the young fingers that hold the cigarettes. Epstein’s wit is laced with compassion, as he turns these rituals of boredom and beauty, excess and denial, alienation and possibility into a distillation of modern America.
ISBN : 3882439130
In the summer of 1999, two boys barely in their teens were so bored they started a fire in a boarded up apartment building in Holyoke, Massachusetts. The fire spread and engulfed an entire city block. Mitch Epstein’s father owned the building and was sued for 15 million dollars he didn’t have; Epstein’s father also owned a once successful furniture store that now faced liquidation. Family Business is an epic work about the demise of a Jewish immigrant dynasty and it traces the fall of a New England town from industrial giant to drug-dealing capital. Epstein has combined formally rigorous pictures with fluid video clips to recreate his father’s universe. The book’s four chapters – Store, Property, Town, Home – include photographs, storyboards, video stills and dialogues. In Family Business he has invented a unique format: a mixed-media novel. The book’s conceptual ambitions are matched by its fearless humanity. Surprising, hard-hitting and haunting, it resembles nothing seen before.
ISBN : 1576871010
New York isn’t what it used to be, so why haven’t New York’s photographers and photographic books caught up with reality? Why do picture-makers continue to mimic the gritty glamour and aggression of William Klein’s New York images, or stalk up and down Fifth and Madison Avenues paying peculiar homage to Garry Winogrand, or struggle to rediscover the romance of Nan Goldin’s Lower East Side, on streets now clogged with Starbucks and designers’ tenement-scaled emporia?
What makes Mitch Epstein’s most recent book, The City, particularly interesting is witnessing Epstein’s attempt to breathe life back into a classic, albeit tired, genre. Instead of the usual raucous juxtapositions of visual clichés—pictures crammed with street corner sturm und drang and urban gargoyles—The City‘s elliptical narrative unfolds quietly. There’s a meditative, almost medicated calmness to the book’s color still lifes and cityscapes: the droll display of overwrought deli cakes; a street festival shooting gallery’s targets, featuring the faces of Timothy McVeigh, Amy Fisher and Hitler, offering discounted prices for kids; the sports jacket, carefully folded and placed on the grass in Central Park, whose banal but eerie presence suggests anything from a lunchtime nap to murder.
ISBN : 0393040275
Mitch Epstein’s evocative pictures reveal a complex Vietnam that few Americans have ever seen.This is not a document about the war; nor is it the pastoral idyll other photographers have portrayed. Vietnam, through Epstein’s eyes, is a sometimes disturbing and sometimes sublime palimpsest.
Vietnam: A Book of Changes interprets a culture and landscape largely cut off from the West for the last thirty years, and now open to a market economy and a new relationship to America. The photographs are suffused with the rawness of Vietnamese life lived on the economic and political edge. Under the layer of friendship lies the tension of politics; under beauty lies violence; under the stark faces of remote villagers is the entrepreneurial momentum drawing them to the city; and under the remnants of war is an artistic bohemia grappling with new freedoms and continued censorship.
ISBN : 4807303708
Photographs from Tenri (Japanese).
ISBN : 978-0893812140
Beginning in 1978, Mitch Epstein began photographing in India and has traveled there several times since. His vision of India’s culture strips away the mystical and picturesque façades usually associated with it. Instead, his work shows the mosaic of the daily life of its people. His color photographs are fascinating on their own, but when taken as a whole, his vision shows that India is very much a society in transition. “An emphatic insight into the true Indian experience.”–the publisher.
ParisArt, march 2017Download
Numéro, mars 2017Download
Libération, april 2017Download
Le Monde, march 2018Download
Financial Times, mars 2017Download
Télérama sortir, march 2017Download
Slash, ma 2017Download
Polka Magazine, april 2017Download
The New Yorker, august 2016Download
Aperture, october 2016Download