Thursday, January 19, 2012

How Zoe Strauss Flips Urban Stereotypes on Their Head

Using money she had received for her 30th birthday, Zoe Strauss bought a camera in 2000 and began shooting a 10-year project that had previously existed only in her imagination. The urban landscape of Philadelphia and its inhabitants soon found a new herald and champion in Strauss, who dreamed of creating “an epic narrative about the beauty and struggle of everyday life.” In Zoe Strauss: Ten Years, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art through April 22, 2012, Strauss invades the rarified world of the culture industry and injects the gritty reality of the deindustrialized inner city, thus sending sparks flying from that clash and reenergizing both worlds. Strauss flips all the dehumanizing stereotypes of urban life in America on their head and restores the human face and indomitable spirit behind the façade of decaying infrastructure. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "How Zoe Strauss Flips Urban Stereotypes on Their Head."

[Image: South Philly (Mattress Flip Front), 2001 (negative); 2003 (print). Zoe Strauss, American, born 1970. Chromogenic print, Image: 6 7/8 x 10 1/8 inches (17.5 x 25.7 cm), Sheet: 8 x 10 3/8 inches (20.3 x 26.4 cm). Philadelphia Museum of Art, Purchased with funds contributed by Theodore T. Newbold and Helen Cunningham, 2003.]

[Many thanks to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for providing me with the image above, a review copy of the catalog to, and other press materials related to Zoe Strauss: Ten Years, which runs through April 22, 2012.]