The black and white photographs of Americans Paul Strand (1890-1976) and Emmet Gowin (b. 1941) are marked by elegance and visual power. This exhibition presents overviews of careers in which Strand and Gowin pursued and expanded the expressive possibilities of portraiture, landscape, and still life. This exhibition in two adjacent galleries will highlight 70 prints spanning a hundred years, including rare works of exceptional quality acquired by the Museum from Strand’s archive in 1978.
Preferring the rural to the urban, these photographers revel in details of the familiar and imbue the commonplace with a poetic sensibility. Strand and Gowin also emphasize the physicality of their photographs, which are crafted through specialized materials and elaborate processes in the darkroom. The exhibition title refers to their mutual efforts to evoke the weight and forcefulness of the natural world in their dense prints.
The Weight of Things: Photographs by Paul Strand and Emmet Gowin is on view at the Saint Louis Art Museum, November 8-February 16, 2014.