New York Photo Review
NYPR Archives - 2010

Laura Letinsky
Laura Letinsky
After All
Laura Letinsky, "Untitled #7", from the series "The Fall", 2009

Laura Letinsky, “After All” exhibition of large-scale photographs continues to explore the practice of still life in artworks. Her compositions possess less formality and are heavy with contrasting elements, alluding to a struggle between domesticity and the wild.

The tabletops in Letinsky’s photographs are composed with irregular pairings of empty vases, wine rings stains and brambles of dying flowers. It suggests a time after the dinner party, when the drama is over, and what is left is the trails of the aftermath of the event. The peculiarity of the items on each table seems like random puzzle pieces. Like a crime scene, the investigation goes on in your mind’s eye, trying to make a sensible narrative for the visual scene. There is full intent to where each item is placed, despite the randomness of articles within the composition. The space relation from piece to piece creates a dynamic visual conversation, filled with shapes, lines and depth.

In the photograph “Untitled #28,” from the series “The Dog and the Wolf” there is a round table draped in a white tablecloth. Off to one side are orange peels set as if the orange rolled over and out. Closer to the viewer is an Octopus, flung into a white bowl, its tentacles strewn over the edge, like wet long hair. A piece of blue string is also nearby, mimicking the tentacles. This is illustrative of the curious elements Letinsky uses as her props, which become a mystery of narrative.

More like springboards to a more interesting narrative, Letinsky’s use of monochromatic backdrops and distinctive objects create the tension she seeks in the subject matter for “After All.” Yet the interest dulls as you feel like you missed all the fun and are left to clean up the mess.

 by unidentified photographer.
Laura Letinsky, “Untitled #28”, from the series The Dog and the Wolf, 2009

Laura Letinsky
After All

Yancey Richardson Gallery
535 W 22nd St. 3rd Fl
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Thursday, September 16 to
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Hours: Tue-Sat, 10-6