FRANCESCA WOODMAN PHOTOGRAPHED BY GEORGE LANGE
In Danziger Gallery’s online Viewing Room of COVID-19 postponed shows, they’re presenting a selection of George Lange’s photographs of Francesca Woodman taken when they were students and friends at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). A visual dialog between two remarkably talented young photographers, Lange’s photographs of Woodman are both a celebration of youthful creativity and a premonition of the importance Woodman’s pictures would have in their exploration of self-portraiture, female subjectivity, and the expressive power of photography.
A counterpoint to the view of Woodman understandably imposed by her suicide at the age of 22, Lange’s pictures of Woodman have a charm and an energy and the unusual combination of one photographer photographing another -usually we see photographers photographing painters, actors, and musicians but no other photographers. Kept virtually untouched in a box for close to forty years along with a selection of prints and ephemera that Woodman gifted to Lange, the work was exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver last year in a show titled Portrait of a Reputation. A book of the same name was also published by Rizzoli. Not just a view of the student as artist (or artist as student), the photographs are a portrait of a friendship.
Lange, who went on to be a highly acclaimed editorial photographer, clearly saw that Woodman had the makings of a star and his pictures are imbued with an appreciation of her talent and a premonition of her significance as an artist. By turns objective, intimate, and amused and aware of the mess that was Woodman’s personal and creative environment, Lange’s photographs shine a light on both sides of the camera in engagingly composed and recorded images.
DANZIGER GALLERY, 980 MADISON AVENUE NEW YORK, NY
MAY 18 – JUNE 1, 2020
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