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Is a Polaroid worth a Thousand Words? 

   
 

Philip-Lorca diCorcia's Thousand

   

 

  

 

Thousand is the title of an ingeniously constructed exhibit of no less and no more than one thousand Polaroid photographs taken by Philip-Lorca diCorcia, currently on view at the David Zwirner Gallery in Chelsea.  The photographs were culled from over 4,000 that diCorcia took over the last twenty-five years and provide a detailed look at his life and work and mirror the compilation for his 2007 book, Thousand.

The pocket-sized photos display diCorcia's meticulous sense of composition and eye for detail.  The work here is not organized into formal sections or categories; part of the challenge and pleasure of viewing the show is in trying to piece together the hidden links and logic behind the photographer's selections.  The Polaroid, first sold in 1948, captured the imagination with its attempt to instantly capture and quickly deliver the world in images.  DiCorcia has always muddied the boundaries between the artificially constructed and the documentation of fact.  These Polaroids capture intimate emotions as well as the random events of everyday life - the pictures are in fact perfectly composed and thought out - capturing a certain orchestrated spontaneity.  The photographs include Polaroids of many of his well-known photographs, portraits of friends and family, as well as everyday household objects.  An empty airport lobby or waiting room also has its place in this visual compendium, as do double exposures and test shots - a taste perhaps of things that don't always work out as planned.

Viewing one photograph after another creates a visual story, and in a very broad sense is comparable to the way film frames are knitted together into a finished movie.  The Polaroids are displayed at eye-level along a long thin aluminum railing attached to the gallery's main walls - forming a long multicolored ribbon or bandeau which winds its way through the gallery. 

Catch Thousand while you still can, it's only open a few more days. (Through March 28 at the David Zwirner Gallery, 525 West 19th Street.)  

 

See: The David Zwirner Gallery 

 

 

 


       
 

 
       
     

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