The images collected at the ICP all center of highly charged, often political subjects: the Vietnam War, nuclear waste/warfare, and environmental destruction/ecological catastrophe. There are cooling towers, dead eagles, guns and bullets, deforested pine stumps, and references to the Exxon Valdez and other oil spills. Unlike a documentary photograph which purports to tell some sort of truth, leaving it up to the viewer to draw his/her own conclusions, Wood's works are obviously opinionated; there is no confusion about where he stands on these issues, given the dark, shadowy montages and juxtapositions that he has created. While not falling into the easy traps of propaganda, Wood mixes his imagery to create sometimes harsh, confrontational works that force us to see these important issues from his point of view. And while I can't say these works are fun exactly, they are certainly a splash of cold water to wake you up and get you thinking.
- Main exhibition John Wood: On the Edge of Clear Meaning at NYU's Grey Art Gallery (here)
- Exhibition catalogue (here)
- NY Times review (here)
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