William Eggleston, 'Untitled (Newspaper on Ground, Grass, California)', 2000
William Eggleston, 'Untitled (Room with Old TV, Lamps, Wildwood New Jersey)', 2002
William Eggleston, 'Untitled (bathroom with pink curtain, Cuba)', 2007 (detail)
Consisting of 22 photographs taken over the past decade, Eggleston’s current exhibition at Victoria Miro (showing concurrently at Cheim and Reid, New York) conveys a subtle departure from the 70 year old’s signature use of high-key colour.
In the 1960’s, this ground-breaking use of colour led the artist to be described as ‘The father of colour photography’. At a time when ‘art’ photography was largely black and white and colour photography was relegated to advertising, journalism and family snaps, Eggleston rejected the restrictive rules of the period, focusing instead on the everyday in brilliant colour.
’21st Century’ reveals a delicate, more subdued palette and exquisite plays of light. Eggleston’s increasingly abstracted compositions reveal his innate ability to expose the extraordinary in the banal. The pinkish hue of ‘Untitled (bathroom with pink curtain, Cuba)’ is almost otherworldly, an effect enhanced by Eggleston’s skewed viewpoint.
For many years Eggleston has photographed the familiar, examining the very essence of things. Through his eyes, the ordinary becomes strange, abstracted and often exquisitely beautiful.
William Eggleston, 21st Century, Victoria Miro, 16 Wharf Road, London until February 27, 2010 and Cheim and Reid, 547 West 25th Street, New York until February 13, 2010.