Thursday, April 14, 2011

Xavier Nuez my favorite artist and his slight connection to Bosnia and Sarajevo

Xavier Nuez is my favorite photographer. I have been a big fan of his work for years since he first did his series Alley's and Ruins. I have sent some of his photographs to friends in Bosnia as gifts, as I thought the Bosnian dark sense of humor and love of art would appreciate his work as much as I do. I talked to Xavier about his experiences and the war torn post war Bosnian landscape especially in Sarajevo post war. He was fascinated by the possibilities and said he had some friends going to visit BiH. He has now become a major artist to be noticed and I appreciate his dedication to his art form.

This is a recent article abotu Xavier Nuez from the New York Times....

New York Times veteran reporter, Corey Kilgannon became fascinated by Xavier Nuez’s daring body of work, Alleys & Ruins, after attending the opening reception of his solo show in New York City recently. Two days later, Kilgannon and Nuez were out exploring some of the area’s most run down corners after midnight, while Nuez searched within the acute urban decay for subjects to photograph. Photojournalist Robert Stolarik went along to document Nuez’s habits in the urban jungle.
               Even though they are dark, dangerous places where you are warned not to go, for Nuez, bleak urban settings are his inspiration and second home.  For 20 years, late at night he has ventured into some of the country’s most threatening corners, frequently leading to trouble. Whether it is an eerie alley in Compton, California, an inner-city ruin in Detroit, or a dead-end back-lot in Brooklyn, he wants to create monuments out of these shunned places.
               The journalists got a taste of what Nuez goes through to capture his images when cops caught the trio in the wrong place at the wrong time. “Some people visit New York City and photograph the typical tourist spots in gleaming Manhattan, not Nuez,” writes Kilgannon.
Nuez’s solo exhibit continues at the Condé Nast building, located at 4 Times Square in Manhattan, until April 18, 2011. The show features fifteen 32x40 and 44x55-inch Ultrachrome prints.
               “I’ve been chased by violent street gangs, accosted by crazed addicts and drug dealers, and have been held at gun point. And yet under these trying conditions, and within the filth and stench of the city’s gutters, I find inspiration. With a family history of homelessness and with a belief that I was next, I found the need to dignify what has been rejected,” says Nuez.
               Nuez shoots his photographs with a 50-year-old Hasselblad film camera. To capture the vivid colors in his images, he brings battery-powered lighting equipment and colored gels that are combined with long exposures - sometimes more than one-hour.
               Xavier Nuez’s photographs have been featured in solo and group exhibitions in museums and galleries throughout North America, including the Marin Museum of Contemporary Art in California; the Attleboro Art Museum in Massachusetts; the Masur Museum of Art in Louisiana; and the Museum of the Living Artist at the San Diego Art Institute. His work is in numerous public, corporate and private collections, including those of the University of Richmond Museum in Virginia; the Norfolk Southern Collection; and the Vicente Fox Center Museum in Guanajuato, Mexico

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