Bonni Benrubi Gallery is pleased to announce a solo exhibition of new work by photographer Abelardo Morell. This exhibition presents work from Morell's innovative tent camera obscura process. Morell continues to push the boundaries of the way we see with the use of a lightproof tent and periscope that allows the artist to project a view of the nearby landscape directly onto the ground below. On view will be the first images achieved within this domed structure: the iconic buttes and craggy outcroppings of the American West projected onto the sand and pebbles at his feet. Work from Acadia National Park in Maine is typically Morellian in impact; the landscapes he captures are a sly nod to other artistic media and eras. The resulting photographs play on the tropes of impressionistic painting as the projected landscapes are refracted on the grass and sand below.
In his latest work, Morell continues to push the boundaries of post modernity as he travels to Italy, positioning his tent on the historic cobblestones of Rome and Florence and entering into the Villa Medici. In one image, his tent cum camera obscura inhabits the same space and spirit of Brunelleschi as he famously painted the Florentine Baptistery circa 1425 in the first known demonstration of optical linear perspective, created with the aid of a pinhole drilled in a mirror. Morell's tent and traditional camera obscura images of Italy, including that of the Baptistery, serve not, however, as dry linear truths, but rather fluid juxtapositions imbued with the same sense of discovery, magic and wonder that powered the Renaissance. Morell again proves that the simple, yet elusive, combination of serendipity, innovation and humanity offers the greatest wealth of artistic possibilities.
Abelardo Morell received his MFA from Yale University and was a professor at the Massachusetts College of Art until his retirement this year. His photographs are contained in some of the most important private and museum collections around the world. He has had eight books of his photographs published to date, and is currently working on The Island of Rota, in conjunction with Oliver Sacks and Ted Muhling to be published by the MoMA this year. A major retrospective of his work jointly organized by the Art Institute of Chicago and the Getty Museum is projected to open in 2013, before traveling to other major venues.