Recent Press: KHALIK ALLAH in PDN
July 19, 2019 - David Walker
HOW KHALIK ALLAH BENT THE RULES OF STREET PHOTOGRAPHY, AND FOUND HIS VISION
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July 10, 2019 - Loring Knoblauch
Allen Frame: Suddenly
Two works in Allen Frame’s new show use vernacular photographs that he discovered during a recent year-long residency in Rome as the jumping off point for hybrid wall-filling installations that put the found images into dialogue with his own photographs. The open-ended mysteries of the anonymous vintage photographs offered Frame the opportunity to graft his own interpretations onto the scenes, and he then went on to expand those themes further, twisting past and present into intimately coupled meditations...
The subtle codes of human attraction that inform the two installations are generally absent from Frame’s larger color images. The pictures instead capture pauses – the in-between moments that happen just before and after something else. Ivana looks out of a widow that could be a painting of the Italian countryside, Ugo checks his phone as he walks down the repaired stairs of an older stone balcony, and Pietro sits on the edge of a swimming pool, looking to his right out of the frame. The photographs linger, and that slowness provides space for vicariously stepping into the lull.
In many ways, these pictures are all testing Frame’s ability to find a particular emotional pitch and stay there, allowing it to blossom and expand into something more complex and intricate. In each of these works/projects, he’s trying to capture invisible restlessness, and attempting to freight his understated scenes with a tiny slice of agitation. When he successfully plucks that string, his pictures shimmer with unseen vibrations.
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June 20, 2019 - Elin Spring
In his three-part exhibit “Suddenly,” Allen Frame’s photographs in Italy build narrative fantasies that draw upon foreign films, theater, southern American literature and his 2018 year-long residency in Rome. Frame starts with and improvises on found Roman photographs from the 1960’s, adding his own scenes with characters who all seem to be anticipating or searching for something. The salon-style grouping “Giuseppe,” a seeming travelogue featuring a strapping sunbather and his friends, the elegantly subdued and ornately framed B&W series “Suddenly” (referencing Tennessee Williams’ 1958 play Suddenly Last Summer) and Frame’s single color photographs of individuals in sun-drenched recreational scenes, all feature a subtle homoerotic charge. With an adroit dichotomy of restrained, often pensive characters in bright, open compositions, Frame’s narratives tease like film stills, building suspense and desire.
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May 14, 2019 - Loring Knoblauch
Feser has carved out a defensible artistic space for herself by not only smartly leveraging the natural dissonance of the image/object dichotomy of photography but also pushing her works further toward sophisticated investigations of surface and abstraction...
As intricately hand crafted objects, Feser’s prints are undeniably impressive and remarkable, but it’s their resulting ability to make us step back, think, and reassess what we assume is happening that makes them durably intriguing...
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April 10, 2019 - Elin Spring
...If my review is as close as you’re likely to get to New York, then please consider this fair warning that there is no way to do these pieces justice online...Feser’s pieces don’t fool the eye so much as play around with it. The geometric and organic building blocks in her work are pleasingly recognizable – squares, triangles, teardrops – arranged in patterns we initially register as familiar. But soon the encounter veers into a seesaw of puzzlement and revelation. Light frolics with shadows, serendipity defies logic, and materiality flirts with illusion.Read More >>
April 5, 2019
WILLIAM LARSON (1942-2019)
It is with great sadness we announce the passing of William Larson.
I only met Will in 2014. By then he was already diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. He warned me that there might be times during our conversations when he would be silent and not respond. He didn't want me to worry if I said something wrong and explained, that among other effects of the disease, it sometimes prohibited him from speaking when he wanted to. I share this because Will was very interested in communicating conceptual ideas. His work explores ideas of perception and representation. He was highly aware of many existing dialogues in the history of art and consciously added to them. I know, if I had met him earlier, our conversations would have lasted for hours. I wish I had more time to learn from him. I will miss him deeply.
Our exhibition of his Fireflies series in 2015 remains a highlight in my career. This series were some of the earliest digitally generated works of art. Larson utilized a technology new to the time, a Graphic Sciences DEX 1 Teleprinter, a sophisticated early fax machine, to present a dynamic way of image making that extended the vocabulary of montage. Larson conducted the technology to produce an almost random juxtaposition of dissimilar images. The symbolic, or poetic, potential of the juxtaposition references "the imperfect operations of memory or dreams."
With Fireflies, Larson sought to move beyond the traditional notion of what a photograph can be. He was interested in representing the fluidity of time with a static work of art. He stated: “I started to work and think of photography as a system of production, supporting a bias toward the additive possibilities of the medium, and less the subtractive, descriptive, or literal.”
Larson grew up in western New York and attended the State University of New York at Buffalo. He received his Master’s Degree in 1968 from the Institute of Design, where he studied with Wynn Bullock and Aaron Siskind. Soon after receiving his Master’s degree, he established the photography program at Tyler School of Art, Temple University, where he taught for over 20 years. He was director of graduate photography and digital imaging at Maryland Institute College of Art for 18 years. Larson’s work has been collected and exhibited by numerous institutions around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Carnegie Museum of Art, The Morgan Library and the San Francisco Museum of Art.
February 1, 2019 - Matthew Weinstein
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ALLEN FRAME: INNAMORATO
curated by LIA GANGITANO
PRATT INSTITUTE Oct—Dec 2018
“Innamorato,” an exhibition by the writer, filmmaker, and photographer Allen Frame, was dominated by Ennio, 2018, a room-size installation made up of more than fifty found Italian Mussolini-era photographs of an air force pilot, his sister, and a handsome young man. The pictures, hung salon style, were set into a variety of secondhand frames. The subjects of the photos appeared well off, beautiful, and youthful. They could be seen with skis in the mountains and cavorting on beaches, bringing to mind the bourgeois family in Vittorio De Sica’s 1970 film The Garden of the Finzi-Continis.
Seven photographs of Ennio were printed by Frame from negatives he purchased along with the photos. Every portrait is full body, and in each one the man is ready for pleasure, be it in sun or snow. Is he an object of desire for whomever took the pictures? Is it the handsome friend and his sister who yearn for him? Or is it the artist, who rescued these people from the obscurity of a flea market? Or could it be us? Perhaps it’s all of the above. Included in the installation were hand-written passages in Italian taken from Absalom, Absalom! (1936), William Faulkner’s tale of a sibling love triangle—thus revealing the narrative that Frame projected onto the images.
December 21, 2018 - Leah Ollman
What matters to Klea McKenna registers immediately when you take her book, Generation, into your hands. For her, touch is on a par with vision. Surface and image are inextricable. McKenna works in the dark, embossing light-sensitized paper through pressured contact with objects, then exposing the textured sheets to the raking beam of a flashlight. In the past, she has made such “photographic rubbings” using the cross-sections of trees; in Generation, she uses different types of handmade fabrics, from a fringed Spanish shawl to an embroidered Pakistani dress. Some of these photograms are included in the book, along with a text in which McKenna reflects on the material history and intimate use of the textiles. Also included are montages of reference photographs, old and new, ethnographic, cinematic, and vernacular. Like the fabrics, like skin, the book’s cover has a distinct life—the cover of my copy will not look or feel like the cover of yours, since a unique one has been created from the residue of the making of the work for each edition in the limited print run. In case we needed the prompt, the inside back cover is stamped with the directive: FEEL ME.
October 27, 2018
KLEA McKENNA reviewed in PHOTOGRAPH
By Michael Wilson
If the photogram is ordinarily associated with a shadowy ephemerality, San Francisco artist Klea McKenna’s approach to the form invests it with a physical heft more often linked to printmaking, or even sculpture...In her Generation series, McKenna redirects her lens toward the human realm, depicting textiles transformed by wear and tear into haunting records of women’s experiences – narratives removed from McKenna’s own by the specificities of time and place but united with it in other ways. La China Poblana (1), 2018, for example, embodies a fascinating intersection of cultural identities in its depiction of an old skirt encrusted with sequins. This traditional garment tells the story of a Rajasthani woman who, in the late 1600s, was kidnapped, sold into slavery, and taken to the Mexican city of Puebla, where she eventually married a wealthy merchant.