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Robert STIVERS

Remembered Reveries

January 14 - February 27, 2020

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Robert STIVERS

Portrait of YW, variant with eye

2018

archival pigment print, edition of 15
24 x 20 inches
RST 235

The photographs of Robert STIVERS feature haunting dream imagery where objects and figures tend to hover and pose or be caught in mid-gesture, reflecting his history as a dancer and choreographer. Stivers' technique utilizes out-of-focus vignettes and motion blur to create a hazy vision of the world that emboldens the viewer’s sense of self.

A.D. Coleman writes of his photographs, "Spun around, unmoored from our reference points, off-center, stripped of the comfort and clarity of specifics, we are thrust abruptly into this astigmatic dramaturgy" (Photography in New York: International Magazine.) Cloudscapes, shadows, and close-ups offer images of fragmented memories, decaying with time but never vanishing. The haunting aesthetics of early photography and silent film resonate through Stivers' oeuvre, facilitating the viewer's plunge into a familiar, but distant cultural unconscious.

John Stauffer, in Robert Stivers’s monograph Listening to Cement, wrote, “He is a unique and original vision at a time when many critics and artists have lost faith in the originality of the artist and the uniqueness of the art object.”

Self-taught in the art of photography, Stivers prides himself on his printing skills. He views art as synonymous with craftsmanship and his photographs are carefully printed on matte papers and hand-toned or manipulated in the darkroom. His evocative combination of technique and imagery results in entrancing, disjointed narratives that require the viewer to fill in the details of the story.

Robert STIVERS has exhibited his work extensively in the United States and Europe. His photographs are included in such museums as the LACMA, Getty Center, Metropolitan Museum, Victoria and Albert Museum, and Brooklyn Museum.

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