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Indepth Arts News:

"Nebraska Now: Roger Bruhn - the New York Series"
2005-10-15 until 2006-01-08
Museum of Nebraska Art
Kearney, NE, USA United States of America

Roger Bruhn’s color photographs of metropolitan life contain social commentary and observances that investigate the sometimes jarring relationship between the media, consumerism, and our daily lives. With the use of a digital camera, the images are sometimes direct, sometimes ambiguous, but always reveal an aspect of the culture that we live in and have created. They are therefore relevant not only to the urban landscape, but to the American one too.

Taken over a four-year period, the large color photographs were made by a very small high resolution digital camera. The camera is of a size that fits neatly in the artist’s pocket, ready on demand to capture imagery, heavy with content, taken directly from the streets of New York City. In most of the photographs, emphasis is placed on the prevalence of sexuality in the media as well as violence and sometimes humor. The images in the exhibition are drawn directly from and are akin to the work of some of the most important 20th century photographers, including Lee Friedlander and Henri Cartier-Bresson, the latter who is known for “the decisive moment” that Bruhn directly comments on in his work. As Bruhn states, “These images can be thought of as a subspecies of the genre of ‘street photography,’ with its emphasis on the discovery of hidden meaning in the often serendipitous and accidental conjunction of people and objects which one encounters on the street.” Although Bruhn does not use film to photograph, he is quick to state that none of the images taken were digitally remastered in anyway….what you see is what is there.

In 1965, Roger Bruhn received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he continued to study philosophy and philosophy of art from 1968 – 1970. He has been a dedicated photographer for over 40 years and in 1990, produced the book Dreams in Dry Places, a collection of 118 black and white photographs of Nebraska structures, both famous and those not. In 1991, he received the Chicago Book Clinic Award and the Spur Award for Best Cover Art from the Western Writers of America, Inc. both for Dreams in Dry Places.

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