Exhibition: Black 1973 - 1986
Dates: 05.31.2012 – 07.13.2012
Higher Pictures presents Black the first New York solo exhibition by George Dureau (B. 1930
New Orleans). The exhibition consists of fifteen photographs from 1973 – 1986 whose
subjects are black males, all New Orleans locals.
With a cult-like following, George Dureau’s photographs are a striking mix of carnal and
heroic, unsentimental yet completely intimate and personal. Known as a painter who began
making photographs as an extension of his paintings, Dureau’s photographs are a significant
contribution to art history, yet somehow, even today, are largely unknown.
On the obvious link to Robert Mapplethorpe, Claude J. Summers had this to say:
Dureau’s photographs have often been compared with those of Robert Mapplethorpe. But
the influence runs not from Mapplethorpe to Dureau but from Dureau to Mapplethorpe. The
photographers were friends in the early 1970s. Mapplethorpe was greatly moved by
Dureau’s photographs, even to the point of restaging many of Dureau’s earlier compositions.
For all their similarities, however, the photographs of Dureau and Mapplethorpe are quite
different. Whereas Mapplethorpe exhibits his subjects as cool and objective, self-contained
and remote icons, Dureau presents his as exposed and vulnerable, playful and needy,
complex and entirely human individuals. The difference is foremost a matter of empathy.
George Dureau was born on December 28, 1930. He attended Louisiana State University,
where he received a B.A. in fine arts in 1952. After serving in the United States Army, he
briefly attended Tulane University, where he studied architecture.
For further information contact Kim Bourus at 212.249.6100.