Ed Panar — Winter Nights, Walking

In the winter months, our planet slowly drifts towards the furthest reaches of its orbital path around the Sun who exerts just enough gravitational force to coax Earth back around one more time, lest we’re launched outward into the Solar System, starless and adrift. A steady shower of millions of individually designed crystal sculpted snowflakes create a soft temporary encasement enclosing trees, poles, wires, streets, hills and houses inside pillowed layers below. During some of those nights there is a heightened sense of stillness and quiet all around, as if the world itself was placed on mute.
The title “Winter Nights, Walking” is a reference to a celebrated photography project by the American artist Robert Adams entitled “Summer Nights, Walking”, which was made in the the city of Denver in the American West. While the project could be seen as a nod to Adams, Panar’s intention for “Winter Nights, Walking” is to make a Pittsburgh-specific project that highlights the unique qualities of the recent winter seasons in this region, with an eye towards the changing climate and the recent dark winters of the Covid-19 pandemic. Through the motif of wandering the city alone at night, Panar invites viewers to walk with me and consider the familiar space of the city in its uncanny delight.

Michael Ashkin — Meadowlands

“The origins of this book can be traced to family drives through the Meadowlands on the way from central New Jersey to New York City. To my young eyes this devastated area was simply the inhospitable but mysterious outskirts of the city. When I moved to NYC as an artist, I made maps out of taped-together satellite images and began traversing the open areas. I walked at least twice a week, sometimes alone, sometimes with Ray Mortenson. It was reassuring walking with another photographer. We encountered wildlife: turtles, shorebirds, racoons. We encountered gunfire. We were stalked from a distance. We stumbled upon encampments in abandoned buildings. We learned to evade guard dogs, security personnel, police. Except when we didn’t. We took our last walk the week before September 11.” — Michael Ashkin. The photographs in this book were originally commissioned by Documenta11 and included in the 2002 exhibition in Kassel, Germany.

Brian Ulrich — Centurion

The title ‘Centurion’ refers to an urban legend of the 1980s that became a reality in 1999. The legend held that American Express issued, by invitation only, a special charge card to ultra-wealthy individuals, who could use it to purchase anything and everything that they wanted, from private planes to private islands—as long as they did not disclose the existence of the card. The company fielded hundreds of calls from people requesting to be considered for the card. Articles were written claiming that the card truly existed (one such article appeared in the Wall Street Journal in 1988), while others were written debunking the claim. Finally, in 1999, American Express launched the Centurion, an actual charge card program with features and benefits resembling those attributed to the elusive 1980s version.
An artist drawn to exploring the visual landscape of America’s consumption economy, Ulrich has spent the last several years photographing sites and people associated with extreme wealth. The allure of material abundance is among the most powerful forces driving contemporary culture, and it permeates contemporary advertising and popular culture. This, despite the old saw (and solid evidence) that money cannot buy happiness, is the contradiction powering the myth that resulted in the reality of the Centurion.

And working on books with

Hans Wilschut, Samuel James,  Simone Engelen, Andres Gonzalez, Liz Orton, Barbara Diener, Taco Hidde Bakker, Anna Kaisa Rastenberger & Iris Sikking, and others.