By Stephanie Wilks
October 19, 2012
FotoFocus is a month-long celebration of the art of photography consisting of more than 50 venues, 70 exhibitions, and 500 artists – right here in Cincinnati. Earlier this week, we reported on Bill Frisell and the photographs of Disfarmer. Now we’d like to highlight some other top-notch events that simply can’t be overlooked.
Tyler Shields: Controlled Chaos
Tyler Shields is an interesting fellow. Though a teenage inline skating legend and winner of three X Games titles, he never graduated from high school. Shields’ photography skills are self-taught. While skating, he began snapping unique and up-close action shots of competitors and soon found himself on the production side of the extreme sport. Then, Shields moved into a career filming music videos, and the rest – as they say – is history.
Now an international celebrity, Shields’ work is continually breaking new ground. He’s photographed Lindsay Lohan and Mischa Barton in a controversial, sexually explicit style comparable to Terry Richardson. And, it doesn’t hurt that he’s dating Francesca Eastwood, 18-year-old daughter of Clint Eastwood and can be seen on the family’s reality show, Mrs. Eastwood & Co.
But make no mistake, Shields is a one-of-a-kind artist. His photographic style is explosively energetic, crisp, and thought provoking. GQ recently named him “Hollywood’s Hottest and Most Twisted Photographer,” and he is the first photographer to ever have an exhibition at Cincinnati’s famed Miller Gallery, located on Hyde Park Square.
Fans, both new and old, packed the house for shows on Thursday and Friday nights to meet the artist and view his work. In fact, it was one of the biggest openings in the Miller Gallery’s history.
“The show had such an energy to it,” said Shields. “Everyone that came was so alive. I could have talked to people all night.”
Shields could be found Thursday night shooting at Hyde Park Square until the wee hours of the morning. The next day he was spotted inspiring budding young photographers at Cincinnati Country Day School. The students were glowing.
People love Shields not only because he’s charismatic and attentive but also because he possesses a visible hunger for art. Despite his widespread success, Tyler Shields doesn’t produce photographs to sell magazines; it’s not about the Benjamins. He just wants to make the world dance.
*The show continues through Oct. 26. at the Miller Gallery 2715 Erie Avenue, Hyde Park Square.
Image Machine: Andy Warhol & Photography
The Contemporary Arts Center
In case you haven’t noticed, event photography is kind of a “thing” in Cincinnati. The Director & Chief Curator of The Contemporary Arts Center, Raphaela Platow, is well aware of this trend. She created (in collaboration with The Rose Museum at Brandeis Univeristy) one of the most popular FotoFocus exhibits this year: Rare snapshots taken inside exclusive NYC nightclubs by Andy Warhol during his notorious clubbing days.
Annie Leibovitz, spied at the CAC opening on Sept. 21 (Photo credit: Merrillee Luke-Ebbeler)
It’s called “Image Machine: Andy Warhol and Photography” and also includes silkscreens, paintings, videos, and portraits and photographs of his buddies from The Factory (Warhol’s NYC studio). Annie Leibovitz, who was at the CAC to show support for the “Green Acres” exhibit, of which her sister is one of the featured artists, was also spotted at the Warhol opening.
Exhibit runs until Jan. 20, 2013 at The Contemporary Arts Center downtown.
Visions of Pyramid Hill
Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park & Museum
Photo credit: Jackie Daniels
The exhibit of photographic “visions” of nature and modern sculpture, captured by various local photographers, opened last Friday at Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park & Museum. An appreciation for nature and organic architecture reminiscent of famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright can be seen in many of the photos, as well as in the park itself. Notably, the park, museum, and underground pyramid house for which the park was named, was featured on HGTV this week in an episode of “Extreme Homes.” The episode airs again on Sunday at 8pm.
Visions of Pyramid Hill will be on display at The Ancient Sculpture Museum until Oct. 25.
Carnevil: Halloween Closing Party
Saturday, Oct. 27
Time: 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Location: Historic Thompson Estate in Newport