German Thomas Struth is presenting a series of new photos this month at Marian Goodman’s New York gallery space, presenting a series of recent works, among which are 5 large format photos made at Disneyland, part of a recent series the 59-year old photographer is currently working on.
Best known for his cycle titled Museum Photographs (1989 – 2002), depicting human interactions within museum spaces, Struth has photographed in museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, The Louvre, The Hermitage and the Vatican Museum. Here, he returns his interest to the interior architectures of various recreational and cultural institutions, most notably the disconnected retro-fantasy of Disneyland.
Struth’s work here includes jungle landscapes, deserted streets, and empty laboratories. He seeks to capture the chaotic man-made environments, without people, to emphasize the presence of human creation. Sure enough, the whimsical spaces and snaking mechanics of his various subjects stand as a testament to human imagination, all while sitting somewhere beyond immediate recognition.
But in equal measure, Struth’s work takes on a degree of self-recognition with each repeated viewing. Passing each work, the viewer cannot help but notice a sense of familiarity, some abstracted recognition that keeps each scene from falling into pure other. Marian Goodman Gallery presents Struth’s work in a way that allows the viewer to meditate on each large-format photographic print individually. The gallery’s large white walls, high ceilings, and spacious layout allows one to move from one environ to the next, stepping into the landscapes to experience the artists’ concept of solace in human creation.
Struth has had solo exhibitions at institutions such as MoMA, MoCA, Whitechapel Gallery, The Metropolitan Museum, and is one of the most widely collected art photographers alive today. His work is on view through February 22nd.
— M. Zarya
Thomas Struth [Marian Goodman Gallery]