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Reflected Images (Chicago), from "Society's Man"

Accession Number
1985/2.63.9

Title
Reflected Images (Chicago), from "Society's Man"

Artist(s)
Algimantas Kezys

Artist Nationality
American (North American)

Object Creation Date
1968; printed 1984

Medium & Support
gelatin silver print on paper

Dimensions
23 15/16 in x 19 15/16 in (60.8 cm x 50.64 cm);28 in x 22 in (71.12 cm x 55.88 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Dr. Milda Budrys

Label copy
In these photograhs, Algimantas Kezys and Carl Chiarenza disrupt the legibility of their subjects by using mirrors and windows that manipulate our view rather than simply reflecting it.

Originally from Lithuania, Kezys moved to Chicago in 1950 and spent several decades photographing the monumental urban landscape around him. In Reflected Images (Chicago), a cracked mirror fractures the silhouettes of two anonymous men in suits. Here, as in other photographs from his Society's Man series (1962-69), Kezys deploys refelctive surfaces and stark contrasts between light and dark to evoke the striking, if unsettling, nature of a city environment.

Chiarenza similarly revels in the formal and conceptual potential of glass fragments to convey the urban experience. In his Bat Window, West End, Boston, he frames the shadowed space beyond a broken pane of glass, which takes on the dark, ominous shape of a winged creature. The image is made at close range, drawing our attention to the graffiti rendered in the dust and dirt on the surface of the glass. Though largely abstract, this image of a potentially vandalized window signals the bleak socio-economic conditions in Boston's historically working-class West End neighborhood.

Primary Object Classification
Photograph

Collection Area
Photography

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
Figures
glass
modern and contemporary art
reflections
shadows

& Author Notes

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