Hopper Redux


Hopper Redux

From an Edynn Houk Gallery press release:

Edwynn Houk  Gallery  will be exhibiting new photographs by the New York based  photographer, Gail Albert Halaban (b 1970, Washington D.C.).   Hopper  Redux is Halaban’s most recent  series, reimagining the famous watercolors by Edward Hopper in and  around Gloucester, Massachusetts.

Edward Hopper has  served  as  an  important  historical precedent for  Halaban’s  work,  and  his  influence  is made  explicit  in this new series.   She photographs the exact  locations  in Gloucester  where  Hopper  painted in the 1920s, and  her photographs of these same homes elicit an uncanny familiarity.  While the images echo his watercolors,  they   are  decidedly   photographic  and   of  the  present   day;  the  houses   oscillate   between   the historical past  and  the contemporary present. Through dramatic lighting  and  meticulous placements of props and  people  within  – taking  cues  from  Hitchcock’s  mise-en-scène –  and  her  detailed post-production work, Halaban makes  the  buildings act  as  characters in  their  own  right,  evolving  over  the  passage  of time.    The formal  composition of each  image  – rigorous,  deliberate, and  tightly  structured – acknowledges the  painter’s influence  on the photographer.  The lone isolation  of each home underscores the melancholy of his paintings.

In each  series of Halaban’s work,  she explores  the tensions  between  private  spaces  and  public  displays,  made perhaps most striking in heavy  urban streets  of Out My Window,  a collection  of images  taken  through and  of the windows  and  buildings in New York City.   It’s an acknowledgement of what  we all do, whether spoken  or not,  of being  a voyeur,  incessantly peering  into others’  windows.   Hopper  Redux further explores  some of the themes  from  Out My Window:  the urbanity, the individual isolation,  and  the voyeur.   As in Out My Window, the   subjects   seen   in   the   windows   or   on   the   front   sidewalks   are   active   participants,  aware   of  being photographed, posing.    They  are  looking  out  whilst  also  being  gazed  upon.    In  Hopper  Redux, the  homes themselves  are active participants too.

The facts:
Hopper Redux
November 8, 2012 – December 22, 2012
Edynn Houk Gallery
745 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10151
Phone: 212 750-7070

Photo above:
Hodgkin’s House, 2010

All photographs copyright the artist.

Anderson’s House, 2011

Good Harbor, 2012