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This book coincides with an exhibition which was the first to focus on David Smith's long and diverse involvement with photography, a medium central to his oeuvre and which he worked with throughout his life. The exhibition included eighty vintage photographs as well as related sculptures, paintings and drawings.
In the 1930s David Smith began by photographing arrangements of found objects including coral, stones, wire and bones, sometimes collaging and painting on the negatives in a constant process of exploration and experimentation. He photographed New York City, the Brooklyn waterfront near his studio, and began a lifelong study of his three-dimensional work through photographs.
Photography provided David Smith with inspiration for work in other media, as seen in the relationship between a series of nude photographs he made in the 1960's, and the paintings which are clearly based on them. In the late photographs of his sculptures, set in the landscape around the studio in Bolton Landing, New York, in different conditions of light and weather, Smith transformed his three dimensional work, manipulating scale and mass by photographing a sculpture from different heights, angles and directions. Like his drawings, these photographs were a direct source for other sculptural works.
This catalogue of Smith's work shows that the his overwhelming achievement as one of the key sculptors of the 20th Century also extended to photography and that he infused the medium with his own innovative working methods to create a varied and distinctive body of work.
Published by Matthew Marks Gallery
225 x 280 mm