Ballroom Marfa Art Fund


Deborah Luster at Jack Shainman Gallery

1 Feb 2011


Tooth for an Eye, Ledger 01-05 and 01-06, 2008
Silver gelatin print on ink press film with acrylic on Dibond
Courtesy of the artist and Jonathan Shainman gallery.

We’re very excited to feature the work of Deborah Luster in our next show, The World According to New Orleans, which opens 18 March 2011. Luster’s current show at the Jack Shainman Gallery in New York, Tooth for an Eye, was recently featured in The New Yorker. As Vince Aletti describes:

If Deborah Luster’s photographs of New Orleans at the Jack Shainman gallery look like they came from police-evidence files, that’s probably because her subject is crime scenes. Someone was killed at each of these sites; the photographs’ captions note the names of the victims and the method of their death (almost always by gunshot). Although the crimes include several of the notorious police shootings after Hurricane Katrina, most were far less sensational, and the intersections, sidewalks, and alleys where they occurred have sunk bank into anonymity. But Luster turns the locations into memorials, and the subjects of her carefully focused attention are impossible to ignore. Her format emphasizes that focus by framing each site in a circle not unlike the lens of the view camera she uses. The device is old-fashioned, recalling the circular vignettes of early Kodak prints; for modern-day viewers the effect is both seductive and unsettling, like looking through a peephole or the sight of a gun. Suddenly, we are there, and desolation, desperation, and death are very real.

The show closes on 5 February 2011, so be sure to stop by if you have a chance. And if you’re in Marfa after 18 March, you’ll have a chance to see Luster’s work.