September 6–October 15, 2005
“In American Surfaces, I was photographing almost every meal I ate, every person I met, every waiter or waitress who served me, every bed I slept in, every toilet I peed in. But also, I was photographing streets I was driving through, buildings I would see.”
— Stephen Shore
For more than thirty years Stephen Shore’s photography has managed to stay relevant, always one step ahead of year-to-year movements in contemporary art.
Central to Shore’s oeuvre is the series American Surfaces, first conceived, like the epic series Uncommon Places, as material for an artist-book. Begun on a cross-country drive in 1973 and extended through road trips back and forth across America into the 1990’s, American Surfaces locates Shore’s idiosyncratic style between the plain documentation of Walker Evans and the pop dead-pan of Andy Warhol. As Shore’s Rollei 35 point-and-shoot camera bears witness to the public spaces and technologies of the American exterior, it also seeks out the surfaces of interior life. Images move from road-signage and architecture to the half-eaten sandwiches and mask-like faces of its passing citizens.