James Welling: Choreograph (signed edition)
Photographs by James Welling. Text by Lisa Hostetler.
To create Choreograph, Welling photographed dancers performing in New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Los Angeles, ultimately combining these images with landscapes and architecture. In a multichannel hack, Welling attains “pathological color”—the purposeful misuse of imaging technologies as a way to short-circuit conventions of photographic representation. Welling notes: “To my surprise, the buildings and landscapes that I used often seem to function like theatrical stages for the dancers. By choosing to use ‘choreograph,’ drawing with dance, as a noun, I am noting its similarity to ‘photograph,’ drawing with light.”
Lisa Hostetler, curator of photographs at the George Eastman Museum, contributes an essay that puts this body of work into the context of James Welling’s larger output, asserting that Choreograph functions as an antidote to modernistic ideas about photography, while also providing a compelling summation of Welling’s prior practice. This volume, printed in the United States with an extended ink range that captures the work’s wild array of vibrant colors, accompanies an exhibition of the same name at the George Eastman Museum, Rochester, New York, scheduled to open in July 2020.
Number of pages: 104
Number of images: 75
Publication date: 2020-09-29
Measurements: 11.6 x 9 x 0.2 inches
James Welling (born in Hartford, Connecticut, 1951) has held solo exhibitions at the Cincinnati Art Museum, Ohio; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland; Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels; and Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minnesota; among others. Welling is a recipient of the Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography, New York, and DG Bank-Forder Prize in Photography from the Sprengel Museum, Hannover, Germany. He is a professor at Princeton University; Welling has held various teaching positions since 1995, including Photography Area Head in the University of California, Los Angeles’s Department of Art, where he taught for over fifteen years.
Lisa Hostetler is curator-in-charge of the George Eastman Museum’s Department of Photography. She joined the Eastman Museum following time as the McEvoy Family Curator for Photography at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC, and seven years as curator of photography at the Milwaukee Art Museum. Her exhibitions include Color Rush: 75 Years of Color Photography in America (Milwaukee Art Museum, 2013) and the touring exhibition Taryn Simon: Photographs and Texts (2011–12).