This month take a cruise over to Drive-Thru Gallery owned and curated by Andrew Pielage. Drive-Thru is featuring the stunning black and white photography series The Near End: An Infrared Retrospective by local artist Brian Klein. This new series focuses on exploring the technical side of photography; Klein says, “the ability to record these images from a different part of the spectrum and to present them in aesthetically pleasing way turned into a passion and love for the film.” When creating his eye-catching black and white photographs he favors to shoot with a 35mm camera and Kodak infrared film. There is such beauty, drama and mystery in each of his photographs, striking places viewed through his black and white “lens” transporting the viewer into another time and place.
An interesting exhibition, Klein uses “black and white photography to garner so many deep feelings from such a wide variety of society.” The poignant photograph titled “Mueller Mausoleum” is dramatic, somber, well executed and beautifully printed. The titles of his artworks are simply an indication of where or what the photograph is, but a closer inspection of the work reveals amazing shadows and incredible architecture. A majority of photographers focus on color nowadays, but he is drawn to black and white because “it’s more versatile and has a timeless look, plus we see everything in color all the time”. Exciting to view the world through his lens such as with his photograph “Villa Kiin” which takes the viewer to an exotic local minus the color and the viewer must imagine this world on their own. Klein went on to say, “I love the fact that reality can be presented this way, something different and dramatic.”
It is definitely rare for photographers to traditionally print their own pieces in this day and age. Klein loves the experience and the result stating “the process is tangible, I’m sticking my hands in the chemistry, and of course it’s nostalgic.” Looking back at photography through an art history perspective we think of the dark room, the nostalgia, and black and white. All these things are present in Klein’s work with the addition of his keen eye for detail. The simple black framing of the artwork keeps the viewers attention while enticing them in for a deeper look. When we spoke further about printing photographs he said “now that the norm has gone on digital overdrive, which I’m not entirely opposed to, I feel that the traditional photographic processes like print making has become bigger part of the aesthetic process rather than the status quo.” This is definitely apparent in his work.
Mr. Pielage chose a great artist to exhibit in his interesting and relatively new gallery. The simplicity of the gallery space and clean white walls make Drive-Thru Gallery a perfect pairing for Klein’s work. This is an intriguing exhibition, which takes the viewer into quiet places exposing the pure beauty of what is right in front of them. Take a stroll through Drive-Thru Gallery and explore Klein’s incredible imagery. Phoenix New Times recently voted Drive-Thru Gallery “Best First Friday Hangout” too! This exhibition will be open on October 18th for Third Friday from 7-10pm.