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images from left to right: Nikki S. Lee, Arne Svenson, Rineke Dijkstra © Courtesy of the artists & Julie Saul Gallery

535 West 22 St.
New York, NY 10011
November 19th, 2009 - January 9th, 2010
Opening: November 19th, 2009 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Tue-Fri 10-6; Sat 11-6


The Julie Saul Gallery is pleased to present a group exhibition called Heads which will bring together photographs by fourteen artists working in photography. Portrait representations come in many forms, and this selection explores the idea of what animates or objectifies the human physiognomy.

Several of the most lifelike representations are actually models of one kind or another- Arne Svenson's series of forensic portraits is represented by a little boy who engages the viewer with startling veracity, and Tanya Marcuse's wax maiden from a Viennese museum has the dewy freshness of a living figure.  Helen Van Meene's elegant young girl and Soo Kim's contemplative young man have artificial qualities which more closely resemble mannequins.  The obscured head is seen in Magdalena Campos-Pons' Bim Bim Lady where she  is covered by an African textile but her sensuality is revealed in the fruit she offers.  Jeff Whestone's hunter is camouflaged by a mask but his intense stare animates his persona.

Valerie Belin's Untitled #06070503 hovers somewhere between life and artifice.  Morton Bartlett and David Levinthal demonstrate that even an obviously artificial doll can be brought to life by style and lighting- much like a living model.  Gary Schneider's long exposures of faces render an eerie subjective and very painterly effect, which when seen next to Bill Jacobson's portrait of a 17th century Dutch painting forms a telling dialogue. The pose of Rineke Dijkstra's bullfighter is pure Manet- while the immediacy of the expression is pure photography.  Finally, a blending of all of the above is seen in Nikki S. Lee's palimpsest of street portraits which have been photographically blended into one image.  While several of the works in the show are well known, several of them have never before been exhibited.