• The American Landscape: Color  auction at Christies

    Sale 2205

    The American Landscape: Color Photographs from the Collection of Bruce and Nancy Berman

    7 October 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 46

    MITCH EPSTEIN (B. 1952)

    Key Board for Epstein & Weiss Real Estate at Epstein Furniture, Holyoke, MA, 2000

    Price Realised  

    MITCH EPSTEIN (B. 1952)
    Key Board for Epstein & Weiss Real Estate at Epstein Furniture, Holyoke, MA, 2000
    chromogenic print
    signed, titled, dated and numbered '1/10' in ink (on the verso)
    22 x 28 7/8in. (55.9 x 73.3cm.)


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    "I was 48 and living in New York when my mother called me about the fire. On a windy August night in 1999, two 12 year old boys had broken into a boarded up apartment building owned by my father in Holyoke Massachusetts and, for the hell of it, set it ablaze...The fire prompted me to make a series of large format photographs and a video installation about my father's life to better understand the path he had traveled. Crucial to his story is that of Holyoke itself. The commercial center died in the 70s, its customers gone to the new supermall. Holyoke became a crack-riddled, arson-wrought town. A recent wave of immigrants turned the formerly "white" downtown Hispanic. The culture clash resonates in the relationship between my Jewish American father and his Puerto Rican tenants and employees.

    My father and his generation of men were and still are driven to fulfill an American Dream that had its epiphany in the fifties: Work hard=Do well. This project asks, when and how did that equation fail-for him, but also for a whole country of American Dreamers?"

    -Mitch Epstein, from Family Business

    Literature

    Epstein, Family Business, Steidl, 2003 p. 39; Epstein, Mitch Epstein: Work, Steidl, 2006, p. 193.


    Exhibited

    J. Paul Getty Museum, Where We Live: Photographs of America from the Berman Collection at the Getty Center, October 24, 2006- February 25, 2007