I’m not a great fan of Philip-Lorca diCorcia, whose methods of working have always made me uneasy. Kind of substituting a movie set for real life, pictures that too often feel to me like a photographer saying look how clever I am at making powerful images. In the short clip about his ‘Hustlers’ on ASX, he talks about his favourite image, liking it because it shows something that was only their for perhaps 1/400s when his flash lit up the foreground, bouncing blue light from the guy’s shirt into a triangle on his cheek and elsewhere, something he only saw on the Polaroid before he made the picture.  But although the way his work seems to undermine documentary worries me, I can’t deny that this is an interesting series with some fine pictures, and that series was, as a feature today on ‘Time Lightbox‘ points out, “a defiant response to (largely) right-wing bigotry targeting the First Amendment rights of homosexuals — specifically, those working in the arts.”

You can see much more about his work on the ASX page devoted to him.  And I still feel uneasy, just as I also do about the work of Jeff Wall and others who seem to me to be more concerned about playing to the art market than telling stories about the world.


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