FIRST EXPOSURES AT STEPHEN WIRTZ
Reported by Kimberly Almazan
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Stephen Wirtz Gallery: First Exposures Silent Auction - 20 Years / 20 Photographers.
Photographers: John Chiara, Jennifer Karady, Bill Owens, Richard Barnes, Herb Ritts, Tabitha Soren, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Martha Casanave, Michael Garlington, Eirik Johnson, Michael Light, Eric William Carroll, Sean McFarland, Michael Jang, Monica Denevan, Chris McCaw, Catherine Wagner, Larry Fink, Jona Frank, Julie Blackmon.
Review and images by Kimberly Almazan: 20 Years/20 Photographers is an exhibit and silent auction to benefit the non-profit organization, First Exposures. First Exposures is a San Francisco-based youth mentoring program that matches a student to a photographer; that photographer provides individualized guidance to the student in photography and, more generally, in life.
The photographs up for auction are varied and eclectic, but the lack of cohesiveness is inapposite. The works of art all showcase the skills of impressive photographers.
My favorite piece is Candy, 2007, archival pigment print, by Julie Blackmon. Though it is a photograph of young children playing with and eating candy, the piece carries a lot of weight, likely because it resembles Dutch paintings from the early Renaissance. The dark wood paneling, the mirror hung on the wall and the seriousness of the children's expressions immediately bring to mind the Arnolfini Wedding Portrait by Jan Van Eyck. The fact that the young girl in the center of the piece is clearly aware of the photographer, staring at Ms. Blackmon with piercing eyes, makes the piece even more powerful.
Also intriguing is Catalina's Bun, 2013, archival pigment print, by Alessandra Sanguinetti. Despite the fact that the young subject is not facing the camera and the photo is black-and-white, Sanguinetti still succeeds in evoking a playfulness and youthfulness. The 20 Years/20 Photographers auction raised $42,000 in proceeds for First Exposures.
Circumstance - First Exposures silent auction at Stephen Wirtz Gallery.
Photographs up for auction.
Alessandra Sanguinetti photography - Catalina's Bun.
Candy - photograph by Julie Blackmon.
Julie Blackmon photography in above image closer.
Untitled (Block Party) - photograph by Bill Owens.
Jona Frank photography - Tony, Wirral Boxing Club.
Suspended Giraffe, San Francisco - photograph by Richard Barnes.