Exhibition: Stephen Bulger Gallery - André Kertész - Surveillance

Exhibition dates: May 2June 20, 2015

TORONTO, April 27, 2015 /CNW/ - André Kertész (1894–1985) is an undisputed master of photography, an icon who created much of the visual vocabulary of the medium. Kertész worked thematically throughout his life, repeatedly approaching the same subjects and ideas; refining and redefining his observations as he matured as an artist. Surveillance represents one theme and technique that he continually visited.

This astonishing body of work—assembled together for the first time—reveals the dichotomy of a man who observes from afar, but at the same time creates intimate images in response to what he witnesses. In playful, beautiful, and sometimes ominous photographs, Kertész displays a carefully calculated distance that evokes a sense of longing to belong, simultaneously acknowledging that it will never be. Whether watching his subjects from near or afar, Kertész remains the quintessential outsider. 

As a young adult, Kertész saw himself as a failure at every occupation he tried. Amongst his earliest self portraits are a series of him in various guises, all of which illustrate his bewilderment about the future. Although in a supportive family, his inability to hold a job and his interest in art set him apart as an outsider.

He even frustrated Elizabeth, his betrothed, who insisted he leave Budapest to establish himself elsewhere. With this ultimatum, Kertész left for Paris to devote himself to becoming a working photographer. While successful, Kertész was far away from the support his family provided and he suffered deeply. A sense of loneliness and isolation began to emerge in his photographs. 

Kertész arrived in NY shortly before WWII and was identified as an enemy alien and warned not to photograph on the streets.  Years later, he took solace in an apartment high above Greenwich Village where he embraced new photographic technology, using zoom lenses and an adapted telescope that allowed him to hone in on the people down below and across the way. Observing intimate interaction from a safe distance, Kertész redefined the world he surrounded himself with.  It is here that he developed his penchant for voyeurism into a true art form.

SOURCE Stephen Bulger Gallery

For further information: Stephen Bulger Gallery, 1026 Queen Street West Toronto Canada, 416.504.0575, info@bulgergallery.com

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