Mark Klett: Ideas About Time, a major retrospective of work by an Arizona-based photographer, will be on view at the Neuberger Museum of Art from June 27 through September 26, 2004. The ambitious project features approximately 40 works, selected from throughout Mark Klett’s entire career. Klett recently received the 2004 John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Award for Photography.
Klett, one of America’s foremost landscape photographers who has earned international acclaim, is known primarily for specializing in works that focus on perceptions of the American West. Ideas About Time follows the concept of time throughout the artist’s work, from panoramas and sequential works, to photographs that are exhibited for the first time. “The idea of returning to a place to encapsulate change over time is central to Klett’s work,” says Marilyn A. Zeitlin, Director of the Arizona State University Art Museum, who has organized and is traveling the exhibition. “It is an elliptical commentary on ecological change, but also an observation on mutability.”
The exhibition features works from the artist’s Second View and Third View projects, in which the location and orientation of 19th century photographs of the western landscape were painstakingly recreated in the 1970s and again in the 1990s. The photographic series uses as its basis images that Klett describes as “iconographic,” and responsible for the “monumentalization of the West.” The series creates a unique understanding of the relationship between Western people and places, as the photographs form connections between the past and the present, illustrating the dynamic interaction of nature and culture.
In a similar vein, Klett made digital photographs of the Kobe earthquake in Japan, shooting some shortly after the disaster. He later returned to capture the ways in which people were rebuilding
Among the previously unseen works in this exhibition are more personal photos that also encapsulate the issue of time, including a series of self-portraits Klett took with his daughter on their shared birthdays. Other works include images of detritus from the desert and a panorama of Navajo pony pictographs.
Mark Klett’s work has been featured in exhibitions at the National Museum of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution, the Cleveland Museum of Art, OH, the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, AZ, and the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, TX.
The Neuberger Museum of Art, located on the campus of Purchase College, SUNY, Westchester County, engages and inspires diverse audiences by actively fostering the study, appreciation, understanding and enjoyment of modern art, African art, and the art of our time.
Marble Canyon after William Bell, 1989-1996
1 of 6 postcards in slipcase,
courtesy of the artist