Hous Projects announces a solo exhibition at the New York gallery of Eric Ogden’s “A Half-remembered Season”.
Still memory drips, a pipe in the cellar-dark. - Robert Penn Warren
Eric Ogden chases mythical visions of his childhood in his photography by recreating situations infused with the unruly emotions he associated with the mysteries of everyday objects, such as toys, vacant lots and overgrown houses. Growing up in a working class Flint, Michigan neighborhood, he was ever curious and intrigued not only by his surroundings, but also by the people he encountered. Individuals moved through his young life that he found both terrible and wondrous, like those in the old horror films he indulged in watching. It was the power of suggestion that motivated him. All of those things that as a child you find surreal and are neither able to define, process nor digest, were burned into Ogden’s mind and are translated through his work. As one crosses the threshold to adulthood, these things and places that permeated one’s youth become suffused with nostalgia. Fact increasingly blends with fiction, memories and mysteries turn in on themselves and you question: is the truth what events you can recall? Or is the truth feelings you have about something even if it never happened?
Like his surroundings, the people in his life were crucially influential on Ogden’s photography. His grandfather was a poet and fed his imagination through a mutual correspondence that unraveled his visual ideas into literary terms. These urges and sensibilities also heightened his work in film before he moved into photography, and are very apparent in his cinematic compositions.
Ogden describes his photographs as “populated with characters that seem haunted by the weight of the past, images that evoke the strangeness of the everyday, and the mystery of objects and landscapes that seem to hold their secrets and allude to stories never quite explained.” Characters move amid compositions veiled in darkness with glowing highlights of warmth that infuse the sense of place. Reality blends with fiction and gives the impression you could step right into the frame and watch the story unfold. Moreover, the emotional quality in the play of light and shadow is as much about what you are shown as what you are not. Visions of Graham Greene’s The Destructors are conjured as you move through the images and meet characters both eerie and innocent. These sentiments thread through Ogden’s photography as glimpses not only into his characters’ lives, but also his personal intrigue for psychology and perception.
Eric Ogden lives and works in New York City. His photographic work has been featured in solo exhibitions with Saatchi & Saatchi as well as hous projects and group exhibitions at Stephen Weiss Studio, Edison Place Gallery, Wexler Gallery, Alan Koppel Gallery, Regional Arts Commission, Chronicle Books, ACE Gallery, and Holden Luntz Gallery. Critical attention has been paid to Ogden’s work by Photo District News, American Photo, The Flint Journal. His work was included in the book American Character: A Photographic Journey published by Chronicle Books. Ogden’s assignment images have also appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, Vogue, Esquire, The New Yorker, W, Rolling Stone, and Interview, among others.
The exhibition will be traveling to the Los Angeles location in the summer of 2010 and dates are to be announced.