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Rhona Bitner


April 27, 2006 - June 3, 2006, Paris

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The work of Rhona Bitner is an observation of the parallels between photography and theater. In both one enters a black space and an image appears. What is seen is at once, simply, itself and what it seems to be.

In the CIRCUS series (1991-2001) and the CLOWN series (2001-2002) Rhona Bitner focused entirely on the performer in the spotlight.
In a new series of photographs entitled STAGE, presented for her first solo show at Xippas Gallery, she focus her attention away from the performer and onto the stage about to be inhabited, or once inhabited, by the performer. Although still empty, the stage is filled with expectation and, perhaps, dread as lights dim and a curtain begins to rise. Or, after a performance, with nothing left but the physical space and the memory of what occurred there. As such, the images can conjure both emptiness and occupied space, equally silent and animated.

The perspective is matter of fact and formal. The physicality of the stage, the curtain, the lights, the proscenium arch is what she photographs. These deceptively mute and simple images suggest a complex range of ideas and associations.

In making these photographs she pursues theaters with the same rigorous process as with the circus work. History, literature and the basic tenets of aesthetics provide a structure for the selection of venues, images and vantage points.

This body of work, which recognizes many picture-making dialogues, becomes an observation of the poetic exchange between the theater (as backdrop or subject) and the human experience it seeks to portray.

Rhona Bitner lives and works in New York and Paris. She has shown regularly in United States, at Howard Yezerski Gallery (Boston) in 2005, and at CRG Gallery (New York) in 2001. Her work was included by Regis Durand in “Le Printemps de Cahors” (1996), she has participated in many group shows in France (Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris (2004), Centre Photographique d’Ile de France (2004). Her series “Stage” will be shown at BFAS Blondeau Fine Art in Geneva this autumn.

Her work is part of public collections in US and in Europe: The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York), The Art Institute of Chicago, Le Fonds National d’Art Contemporain (Paris), La Maison Européenne de la Photographie (Paris), La Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris).

A catalogue will be published on the occasion of both exhibitions, at Xippas Gallery and at BFAS Blondeau Fine Arts in Geneva and includes a text by Régis Durand.The work of Rhona Bitner is an observation of the parallels between photography and theater. In both one enters a black space and an image appears. What is seen is at once, simply, itself and what it seems to be.

In the CIRCUS series (1991-2001) and the CLOWN series (2001-2002) Rhona Bitner focused entirely on the performer in the spotlight.
In a new series of photographs entitled STAGE, presented for her first solo show at Xippas Gallery, she focus her attention away from the performer and onto the stage about to be inhabited, or once inhabited, by the performer. Although still empty, the stage is filled with expectation and, perhaps, dread as lights dim and a curtain begins to rise. Or, after a performance, with nothing left but the physical space and the memory of what occurred there. As such, the images can conjure both emptiness and occupied space, equally silent and animated.

The perspective is matter of fact and formal. The physicality of the stage, the curtain, the lights, the proscenium arch is what she photographs. These deceptively mute and simple images suggest a complex range of ideas and associations.

In making these photographs she pursues theaters with the same rigorous process as with the circus work. History, literature and the basic tenets of aesthetics provide a structure for the selection of venues, images and vantage points.

This body of work, which recognizes many picture-making dialogues, becomes an observation of the poetic exchange between the theater (as backdrop or subject) and the human experience it seeks to portray.

Rhona Bitner lives and works in New York and Paris. She has shown regularly in United States, at Howard Yezerski Gallery (Boston) in 2005, and at CRG Gallery (New York) in 2001. Her work was included by Regis Durand in “Le Printemps de Cahors” (1996), she has participated in many group shows in France (Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris (2004), Centre Photographique d’Ile de France (2004). Her series “Stage” will be shown at BFAS Blondeau Fine Art in Geneva this autumn.

Her work is part of public collections in US and in Europe: The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York), The Art Institute of Chicago, Le Fonds National d’Art Contemporain (Paris), La Maison Européenne de la Photographie (Paris), La Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris).

A catalogue will be published on the occasion of both exhibitions, at Xippas Gallery and at BFAS Blondeau Fine Arts in Geneva and includes a text by Régis Durand.

Related artist page: - Rhona Bitner

Thursday 27/04 - Saturday 3/06, 2006

108, rue Vieille du Temple, 75003, Paris, France
tel. +33 (0) 1 40 27 05 55 fax +33 (0) 1 40 27 07 16