“When I graduated from CalArts with an MFA in 1993, I moved to New York City. It’s never an easy time to launch as an artist, but that was a particularly bad time. It was pre-internet, of course, so there were fewer ways to get work seen, and the gallery system was very small […]
“The photobook is a balance, at least its the intention, between this utopia (or maybe call it heterotopia, a concept made up by Foucault) and a life experience…” Fordlândia is an incredible book. IT is an imagined place where the 20th Century’s technological and capitalist utopian visions collide with the reality of the […]
It was the best of years…. Once again it is that time of year where I try to drum up some sort of edit from all of the incredible work the photography book world offers up. This year is difficult as I felt it has been one of the strongest years in recent memory […]
“In very broad terms, it seems that the work made in the West during the 20th century portrays a prolonged event – a disaster, you could say – that unfolded as modernity overtook the landscape and ideologies were instilled in American culture”.
“My initial desire to make this work was my connection and fascination with the language. A language that has existed in my family for hundreds of years but that I do not speak”.
“A friend familiar with what I do suggested I have a look at Bachelor & Spinsters Balls – rural gatherings originally designed to overcome distance and loneliness in the bush.”
“In comparison to film, where a whole instrumentation is at ones disposal to gain and keep a viewer’s attention and involve him or her into an emotional state and consequently within the story, photography and how it is exhibited formed a pretty stark contrast”. -IS
“At some point during that time I was painting inside an abandoned factory and I came across the body of a guy who hung himself. I remember my teacher in painting saying that I should have made a painting of the dude hanging. This teacher later suicided as well. I had several friends kill themselves during that period, maybe a Belgian thing?”
“The facades of shops, the techno-utopias of the call centers or mobile phone sales point bleed into boarded-up strip mall windows and the implications of a plastic and temporary commercial culture begin to appear”(BF).
“However hard I tried to ‘illustrate’ an aspect of the urban environment, to unmask and present how this sleepy, suburban environment ‘functioned’ and fitted together somehow it always failed”.
“The premise and nature of each work, and its eventual architecture, develop as the work is progressing, and again I am led in this by my relationship with the particular site”.
39, WEST WALL, SMICOA, 333 MCCORMICK, COSTA MESA © LEWIS BALTZ, IP 39, FROM THE SERIES “NEW INDUSTRIAL PARKS, NEAR IRVINE, CALIFORNIA”, 1974; STEIDL Interview (excerpt) with Lewis Baltz Conducted by Matt Witkovsky At Baltz’s home in Paris, France. 2009 November 15-17 MR. BALTZ: You aspire to making something – at least at the time, […]