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Robert & Shana ParkeHarrison began collaborating on photographs shortly after graduate school, when they began constructing and choreographing scenarios about mans affect on the landscape. In these stagings, Robert would dress in a black suit and starched white shirt -- often referred in the press as an Everyman – and interact with the land, creating environmental performances. These surreal images addressed issues about the earth and mankind's responsibility to heal the damage he has done to its landscape. Often acting as earth's protector, healer and communicator, Everyman used low-tech instruments, creating settings more akin to cinema than the family photo album. These ground breaking images can be seen in their first monograph, The Architect's Brother.
The ParkeHarrison's completed work from The Architect's Brother in 2005, and spent the next two years working on a new series that introduced color into their current imagery. "Beginnings" is an exhibition of collages they made when working on pieces for The Architect’s Brother. These never-before-seen images reveal the ideas and concepts that went into making some of their best known works. In several pieces we see Everyman experimenting with objects, positions and movement. In others, we see familiar props including cotton, paper wings and twigs. These small collages grant us access into their process and the development of their ideas. "Beginnings" will showcase 23 collages alongside five original painted photographs from which some of their best known photogravures were made. Images in the show include study for the Sower, study for Listening Device, The Flying Lesson (gravure) and the painted photographs for Reclamation and The Guardian.
Robert ParkeHarrison received a Guggenheim Fellow in 1999. In 2007, the ParkeHarrisons’ received the Nancy Graves Fellowship. The Architect's Brother was published in 2000 (Twin Palms Twelve Trees Press) and is now in its seventh edition. Their new color work can be seen in Counterpoint (Twin Palm Press) published in 2008. Their works are included in numerous collections including Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art (NYC), Museum of Fine Arts (Houston) and the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House (Rochester, NY).
Exhibition: September 10 - October 30, 2010