Past: October 27 → December 8, 2012
Nicholas Nixon is an American photographer, born in 1947. Since the 70s, he has specialized in portraits and has made photographical documentaries.
Galerie Eric Dupont exhibits Nixon’s work for the first time, through four emblematic sets: the Brown Sisters, People, Bebe and I and Cities.
In the first room, the portraits are arranged in linear form, showing photographs of couples from the series People and pictures of this artist and his wife from the series Bebe and I. The space lends itself to a dialogue between the public and the work; the intimacy of the interlaced bodies strengthens human ties between the viewer and the subject.
The second area of the gallery is flooded with natural light, in which the photographs show urban images from the series Cities (The Bid Dig project). Enhanced by the simple architecture of the place, these photographs take on a new dimension in the open glass-roofed hall.
Finally, at the back wall of the gallery, is the set of images from the series the Brown Sisters, Nixon’s best-known works. The piece delivers a rich and intense testimony, and condenses thirty-seven years of life and photography. Each year since 1975, the artist has taken a photograph of his wife and her three sisters, always in the same order, in various poses, year after year. Beyond their beauty, these portraits speak of love and sisterhood. The photographs invite us to think about time passing quickly by us, and yet leaving its firm mark.
From the intimate to the universal This exhibition tries to forge a connection between the intimate and the universal. In Nicholas Nixon’s work, everything is a matter of relationship, whether this relationship is associated with love, friendship, family or social ties. Transcending countless divisions — old/young, white/black, sick/well, enduring/changing — his photographs shake up conventional ideals and encourage us to know ourselves better. His collaborator, the Pulitzer–prize winning Harvard psychiatrist Robert Coles, spoke of Nixon’s work, saying it unites “the aloof stance of the scholar with the passion and affection of the friend who cares and is moved.”1. Nixon’s work offers us the compelling opportunity to question humanity and the world around us.
1 Robert Coles. The Mind’s Fate: A Psychiatrist Looks at His Profession — Thirty Years of Writings. Back Bay Books, 1996: p.10.