Ralph Eugene Meatyard

by Ralph eugene meatyard


Ralph Eugene Meatyard. First edition (2005). First impression. Large format hardback in near fine condition. No markings. Binding firm, pages clean. Please see pictures. PayPal accepted, any questions please get in touch.

About Ralph Eugene Meatyard

The photographs of Ralph Eugene Meatyard defy convention: they have been called visionary, surrealistic, and also meditative. Whatever the label, these evocative images of friends and family and the natural world around his home show a delicate psychology of human interaction. Meatyard was trained as an optician, a profession he maintained all his life in Kentucky. He only bought a camera in 1950 to photograph his first born son. But soon he joined the Lexington Camera Club and developed a friendship with his photography teacher Van Deren Coke. As well as a circle of local writers and photographers. Including Guy Davenport, Thomas Merton, Wendell Berry, Jonathan Williams, and also Minor White. Family and friends freely participated in Meatyard's mysterious staged images. They often involved masks and abandoned spaces, as well as obliquely reference social, political, and cultural issues. A key subject in Meatyard's work is the natural environment, which is featured in his "Light on Water" series. Here, long exposures seem to create calligraphic texts, and then his "No-Focus" series, where he deliberately photographed stems and twigs out of focus. In one of his last series titled "Motion-Sound," the pictures were made by moving the camera gently, creating multiple exposures of the woodland scenes that suggest abstract sound patterns. The book accompanies an exhibition organized by ICP Assistant Curator Cynthia Young with acclaimed writer and Meatyard friend, Guy Davenport, who also wrote the text. The book includes an exhibition history, chronology, and also bibliography.

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Publisher steidl