Ralph Eugene Meatyard

Ralph Eugene Meatyard

Cover: Ralph Eugene Meatyard
Steidl Verlag, Göttingen 2005
ISBN 9783865210654
Gebunden, 300 Seiten, 55,00 EUR

Klappentext

Herausgegeben vom International Center of Photography, New York. mit 220 Tritone- Tafeln. Englischsprachige Texte von Cynthia Young, Guy Davenport, R.E. Meatyard. The photographs of Ralph Eugene Meatyard defy convention: they have been called visionary, surrealistic, and meditative. Whatever the label, these evocative images of friends and family and the natural world around his home illustrate a delicate psychology of human interaction. Meatyard was trained as an optician, a profession he maintained all his life in Lexington, Kentucky; he only bought a camera in 1950 to photograph his first-born son. But soon he joined the Lexington Camera Club and developed a friendship with his photography teacher Van Deren Coke, as well as a circle of local writers and photographers, including Guy Davenport, Thomas Merton, Wendell Berry, Jonathan Williams, and Minor White. Family and friends freely participated in Meatyard's mysterious staged images, which often involved masks and abandoned spaces, and obliquely reference social, political, and cultural issues. A key subject in Meatyard's work is the natural environment, which is featured in his "Light on Water" series, in which long exposures seem to create calligraphic texts, and his "No-Focus" series, in which he deliberately photographed stems and twigs out of focus. In one of his last series titled "Motion-Sound," the pictures were made by moving the camera gently, creating multiple exposures of the woodland scenes that suggest abstract sound patterns. The book accompanies an exhibition organized by ICP Assistant Curator Cynthia Young with acclaimed writer and Meatyard friend, Guy Davenport, who also wrote the text. The book includes an exhibition history, chronology, and bibliography.

Rezensionsnotiz zu Frankfurter Rundschau, 09.03.2005

Dem amerikanischen Photographen Ralph Eugene Meatyard ist in eine umfassende Gesamtschau gewidmet, die als leinengebundener Bildband (ohne Schutzumschlag) einfach "phantastisch in der Hand liegt", wie Ulf Erdmann Ziegler begeistert schreibt. Meatyard, bereits im Jahr 1972 gestorben, war von Haus aus Optiker, weshalb ihm niemand den Umgang mit einer Kamera erklären mußte, so Ziegler. Der Rezensent füttert uns mit weiteren Informationen zu Meatyard: er lebte in Lexington, der Metropole Kentuckys, wo er die verfallende Pracht aufwendiger Holzvillen mit der Kamera festhielt. Die Dokumentation dieser Hausruinen, teilweise verfallen oder ausgebrannt, wurde zu Meatyards Spezialität, die er als mysteriöse, teilweise unheimliche Orte ablichtete. Dieser Zyklus steht im Mittelpunkt dieser Werkschau: großartige Prints in Halbtonreproduktion, die leuchten, "als wären sie illuminiert", schreibt Ziegler. Dass Meatyards berühmtes Maskenprojekt in dem Bildband eher knapp gehalten wird, findet Ziegler für den Zugang zu Meatyard eher förderlich. Die beigesteuerten Texte wiederum spiegeln seines Erachtens die eigenartige Situation einer ganzen Künstlercommunity in der Provinz. Aber Meatyard war ein absolut freier Geist, hält er fest.