Marten Elder’s exhibition at Equinox Gallery expands the scope of his continued research and experiments in capturing and rendering colour photographs. Elder’s images of Los Angeles landscapes present hyper-flattened spatial compositions that accentuate the flattening that exists inherently in the photographic transformation of space. Paired with a colour-rendering process that breaks the norms of traditional image processing in favor of maximizing the amount of information extracted from the camera, subtle colour relationships are seen more vividly and new ones are created as the same image is reprocessed multiple times. The resulting photographs appear hallucinogenic and synthetic but are rendered with technical accuracy and firmly rooted in documentary-style description of the world.
These photographs are presented alongside pictures that push the photographic limits of image capture. Deceptively simple photographs of light sources stretch the bounds of tonal separation to the maximum, while studio photographs resembling textbook optic illustrations appear to defy laws of light and colour. This new type of picture opens avenues for investigation into Elder’s ongoing interest in the challenges of translating a three-dimensional world into a two-dimensional image.