Sharon Lockhart
USA, 1964
Sharon Lockhart began her career in photography and film after studying at the San Francisco Art Institute (BFA) and the Art Center College of Design (Pasadena, California). Her work follows a long, western tradition characterised by the contemplative observation of mundane activities. Her work references the paintings of Johannes Vermeer and Caspar David Friedrich as much as the ethnographic studies of Jean Rouch. Her films record human activities in their full duration, repetitive rhythms and patterns that reveal and emphasise actions carried out in an almost choreographic fashion. One of the aspects she reflects in her art is an interest in the procedures and forms of work as well as how it is organised. Lunch Break Installation, “Duane Hanson: Sculptures of Life”, 14 December 2002-23 February 2003, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (2003) consists of a series of four photographs depicting a hyperrealist sculpture by the artist Duane Hanson entitled Lunch Break (1989). The four images show a sculptural ensemble—five construction workers taking a lunch break—from four different points of view. The piece provided the impetus for an artwork bearing the generic title Lunch Break (2008) comprising two films and a series of photographs taken at a shipyard in Maine (Bath Iron Works). Using an image, book or film as a starting point, Lockhart embarks on a meticulous and extensive period of research and pre-production to create her photographs and films. This process involves the collaboration of whoever ends up being the protagonist of her piece; her research leads her to investigate both images and subjects. Lockhart’s projects are also characterised by the choral quality they acquire as part of the evolutionary process of their exhibition. Based on the initial piece, Lockhart develops a constellation of elements referring to the project’s original artwork in a variety of ways, thus building a web that explores details and meanings in great depth.
Neus Miró