Bill Jacobson

Bill Jacobson

Jacobson was one of the earlier out-of-focus photographers, and for obvious reasons in my own work, I am a fan. There is something compelling about the denial of one of the fundamental characteristics of photography that draws me in. Currently showing at the Robert Klein Gallery.

“Bill Jacobson is well known for a body of work that negates (through the application of a diffusing lens) the specificity of photographic vision in favor of an immateriality of light and form. In the past his black and white pictures of isolated subjects suggested actions, moods, even narratives that were ethereal, haunting, and momentary. If his photographs were likened to poetry, Jacobson would be a symbolist rather than a realist.

His first series to feature soft-focus images was 1992-1993’s Interim Portraits. Interim Couples, Songs of Sentient Beings, and Thought Series followed, the last marking Jacobson’s first departure from the human subject. In the body of work that includes 2000’s Untitled, #3830, Jacobson took his camera to the streets of New York and, working in color, captured the prismatic effects of light washing over the active forms of the city. Untitled, #3830 immediately recalls the palette and compositions favored by Edward Hopper and, as a consequence, seems a messenger – or a memory – from an earlier time.” – thanks to the Museum of Contemporary Photography.

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