Howard Greenberg Gallery is pleased to be celebrating its 25th year with an exhibition of twenty-five photographs from the personal collection of Howard Greenberg. Greenberg began his professional life as a photographer and founded the Center for Photography in Woodstock, New York in 1976. He opened his first gallery, Photofind, in 1982 where he exhibited "what I really cared about, regardless of the implication for sales." But the photographs he showed did sell and as the market for photography took off, so did Greenberg's career as a dealer. He opened a gallery in New York's Soho in 1986 and in 2003, relocated to the Fuller Building on 57th Street where the gallery remains today.
When seen as a whole, the photographs in the 25th anniversary exhibition serve as a memoir; each image traces a chapter in Greenberg's life as a collector. Although not all of the pictures would be considered obvious choices, they are connected, explains Greenberg, by "a unity of craft and vision as well as by their compelling personal meaning." The exhibition comprises iconic images by artists such as W. Eugene Smith's powerful documentation of Welsh Coal Miners and Ruth Orkin's universally beloved, American Girl in Italy. In addition, the show will highlight lesser know works including Leon Levensteins's graphically charged Handball Players and the Czech photographer Frantisek Dritikol's avant-garde construction of light and shadows. But despite their diversity, the works are unified not only because they belong to Greenberg but also because they are reflective of the qualities that have come to define the aesthetics of his gallery.
Over the twenty-five years, Greenberg has exhibited the work of many of the photographers included in this show: Ted Croner, Bruce Davidson, Sid Grossman, Dave Heath, Lewis Hine, William Klein, Saul Leiter, Jan Lauschmann, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Roman Vishniac, and Edward Steichen to name just a few. Greenberg's collection and the gallery's program function as a living history of photography, offering periods and styles, from Pictorialism to Modernism, photo-journalism to abstraction; subjects from industry to advertising, architecture to fashion, portraiture to landscape. In the words of Bruce Davidson, "the gallery is like the Library of Congress of committed photography. It is never trendy or boring. Above all, it has never lost a vision of what photography can be."
To commemorate his 25th anniversary, Greenberg has collaborated with Michael Torosian of Lumiere Press to create a special publication of twenty-five photographs from Greenberg's private collection. Established in 1981 in Toronto, Lumiere Press is the private press of Michael Torosian. The press is devoted exclusively to photography and in the fine press tradition, the books are composed in lead, hand printed and hand bound. The book includes a biographical essay by Lyle Rexer and insightful commentary on each photograph by Greenberg.
Opening Thursday, 20 September 2007, 6-8 pm
41 EAST 57TH STREET
NEW YORK, NY 10022