Alibi Fine Art is pleased to announce a solo exhibition of photography by Joseph Sterling. Taste of Chicago is a selection of 15 black and white photographs made by the artist between 1988 to 1990 from the annual festival of the same name. This is Joseph Sterling's first exhibition with the gallery and the premier exhibition of all included works.
In Taste of Chicago, we are given over to peer into the confusion of spectacle, a great gathering mix of Chicagoans and the tourists who flock to the city. Sterling was fascinated by this convergence and brought his panoramic camera to take in as much as possible, capturing a joie de vie and the impossible rifts between peoples, the ennui endemic to the consumer class and the glorious imperfection of togetherness. The Taste of Chicago is an event that most Chicagoans have more than a peripheral awareness of, if not firsthand experience. As an egalitarian meeting point, it has always been a kind of town carnival in its most basic form. The high and the low of cuisine and the haves and have-nots of a city come together to try a little of everything and brush elbows with one another. With these images of Taste of Chicago, Sterling surely imports subtle observation and allows it to work languidly on a hot summer's day, soft in tone and without judgment or conclusion.
Born in El Paso, Texas in 1936, Joseph Sterling moved to Chicago in 1957 to study at the Institute of Design. Sterling was one of five students who became known as "The ID 5" named for the Minor White edited, "Five Photography Students from the Institute of Design, Illinois Institute of Technology," Aperture 9, 2 (1961). After graduating, he had a successful career as a corporate & industrial photographer and educator, teaching at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Institute of Design and Columbia College, Chicago. Sterling's work can be found in many collections including MoMA, George Eastman House, The Art Institute of Chicago and the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago.
Joseph Sterling passed away outside of Chicago in November of 2010.