Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Joel Meyerowitz: Master Of Many Colors
Joel Meyerowitz has been one of the leading fine-art photographers of the last 50 years. His career includes some of the most poignant photos from Ground Zero in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.
|This Article Features Photo Zoom|
Joel Meyerowitz is the recipient of the Lucie Foundation's 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award. This latest accolade doesn't signal retirement—far from it. When the news reached him, Meyerowitz was exploring Tuscany with a 4x5 and a state-of-the-art Leica S2.
Longnook Beach, Massachusetts, 1983
The recent release of the retrospective two-volume, limited-edition Joel Meyerowitz: Taking My Time (Phaidon) presents the photographer's "greatest hits" and many previously unpublished images, as well as a signed print and a DVD of his award-winning film POP in an elegant slipcase.
DPP: What's the idea behind the title of your retrospective Taking My Time?
Joel Meyerowitz: The book celebrates 50 years of photography. For any book, you struggle to find a title that's true to the entirety of the experience. Even though I move quickly when I photograph, the way bodies of work develop happens over longer periods of time. I realized that I take my time shaping these things and never race to make a new body of work. It's always relatively interior in that regard. So I thought, "Is that me? Have I been Taking My Time all these years?" And I realized, yes. It describes my rhythm, my momentum.
DPP: So when developing a new project, it's important for it not to feel forced?
Meyerowitz: There are things that feel genuine. I just know that it's not some superficial idea that I'm trying to expand that doesn't really have richness to it. We're all capable of being authentic and shallow at different times. One of the lessons that photography has taught me is that you can't force things. The world, unless you're a photographer who stages everything, doesn't work according to your wishes. The world is the world, and you just have to try and dance with it in a way that's meaningful and real to you.
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