NEW YORK, NY.- Laurence Miller Gallery
presents TWO OF A MIND, photographs by Ray K. Metzker and Ruth Thorne-Thomsen. Presently husband and wife, these two influential photographers independently created innovative and highly personal works that challenge our willingness to believe and stimulate our need to imagine. Both achieved this by inserting images and objects into the view of the camera, turning reality on its head. This is the first exhibition in which their photographs are presented together.
Ray Metzker's Pictus Interruptus series, made between 1976 and 1981, offers us inexplicable images - landscapes and cityscapes disrupted by abstract forms that combine, complement, and contrast with recognizable elements of the city or the land. Coat hangers, magazine images, folded paper and board were some of the items placed before the camera lens.
Ruth Thorne-Thomsen's Expeditions and Door series, made between 1976 and 1983, as well as her 1991 series Songs of the Sea, also utilized the insertion of objects in front of her pin-hole camera, things like plastic and metal toys, children's charms, ornaments and trinkets. The resulting images feel like poems come to life - credible enough to seem real, yet imaginary enough to seem like dreams.
Ray (born 1931) and Ruth (born 1943) met in Chicago in 1980, and immediately felt a kinship of spirit and mind. Each had been pursuing a personal photographic vision which took reality as a starting point and then explored the world of the imagination to challenge the general belief that what a photograph presents is truth. Metzker was more intrigued by the possibilities of form and space, while Thorne-Thomsen pursued the possibilities of mythology and dreams. For each artist, reality and artifice became intertwined and inseparable.
This exhibition coincides with a major retrospective of Metzker's work at the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, opening September 25th and continuing through February 24, 2013, as well as the publication of a new monograph by Keith Davis, available through the gallery.