I wanted to call your attention to a couple of photography-related things I’ve recently seen. The first is an exhibit at The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C. titled Man Ray – Human Equations. The short version description is this: Man Ray discovered a series of 3D mathematical models in a Paris University in the early 1930s and first lit and oriented them for the purposes of making photographic abstracts which he then used as source material for paintings. The exhibit features the paintings and some of the original models and photographs on which they’re based.
What I found interesting about the exhibit from a photography standpoint is how Man Ray saw human forms in the models and used lighting and composition to interpret them in photographs and paintings. If you’ve ever struggled with how you might photograph sculpture in a way to transform it into something of your making this exhibit will give you plenty of food for thought.
The second item is a documentary on photographer Dorothea Lange. It’s titled American Masters – Dorothea Lange: Grab a Hunk of Lightning. It was produced in 2014 and recently became available as a free streaming offer on Amazon Prime Instant Video. It’s available on DVD and probably other streaming services as well. I knew a little bit about her and her work, but had never really researched her like I have many other photographers. Long story short, she was an amazingly talented photographer, and an especially gifted environmental portraitist.
Man Ray–Human Equations: A Journey from Mathematics to Shakespeare explores the intersection of art and science that defined a significant component of modern art at the…