BRUSSELS.- Gladstone Gallery
is presenting an exhibition of new work by the New York-based artist Anne Collier. Over the past two decades, Collier has developed an expansive body of work that considers the nature of photographic images, our relationship with photographs transmission and objecthood, and the discipline of photography itself. Informed as much by technical and commercial aspects of the medium as by the work of the Pictures generation artists, Colliers work explores photographys self-reflexivity and examines its fraught histories with gender. Her practice traffics in the subtle tensions between an objective, almost-forensic approach to image-making and the often highly emotive and psychologically-charged content her work depicts.
For this exhibition, Collier introduces a new series of photographic triptychs with the collective title Filter. These new works expand upon her ongoing series Woman Crying (Comic) and Tear (Comic): each based on imagery sourced from American romance comic books published between the 1950s and the 1980s. Exclusively marketed to an adolescent female readership, the comic books cliched narratives reinforced the notion of a subservient and eternally suffering female subject. Writing in 2018 about this series art historian Tom McDonough said: Woman Crying (Comic) and Tear (Comic) consist of photographic details of their ostensible subjects drawn from romance comics of an earlier era, that of four-color process printing and Ben-Day dots. With these works we are in the realm of the extreme closeup
At this level of enlargement, we become engrossed by the details of the printing process itself, with its separation and overlay of cyan, magenta, and yellow dots, and its inky black that sits on top of these colors, defining contours and the dense thickets of eyelashes and brows. We even glimpse the grain of the cheap paper on which these panels were printed, losing ourselves between the heightened emotional state depicted, its stylized representation, and the mechanical means by which it has been reproduced.
Filter not only amplifies Colliers ongoing consideration of the analogue photographic process, but also heightens the viewers disorientation within the exaggerated valences of affective resonance, aestheticized depiction, and technological reproduction that is central to Colliers project. After shooting these photographs using a large-format plate camera, Collier worked with a Kodak Color Print Viewing Filter Kit, a now largely redundant, pre-digital technical aide designed to assist with color correction when making photographic prints. Collier laid different graduated colored viewing filters onto a photographic image of a crying woman to create a series of three-part, sequential images that suggest a liminal space somewhere between photography and cinema. In these works, through her foregrounding of the photographic process and her self-conscious use of seriality, cropping, and chromatic shifts, Collier makes evident the manipulations inherent to both the semiotic and optical regimes of images and of the medium of photography.
Anne Collier was born in Los Angeles in 1970 and currently lives and works in New York. Colliers work was the subject of a recent survey exhibition at the Sprengel Museum, Hanover, Germany, (2018), that traveled to Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland (2019). Other recent solo museum exhibitions include: FRAC Normandie, Rouen, France (2017); and a major survey organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2014), which traveled to the Hessel Museum of Art, CCS Bard College, Annandale-onHudson, NY (2014); the Aspen Art Museum, Aspen (2015), and the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Canada (2016). Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the San Francisco Museum of Modern; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Canada; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; FRAC Normandie, Rouen, France; Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland; Moderna Museet, Stockholm; and Tate, London, among others.