Saturday, March 12, 2011

Rebecca Villarreal reviews Loretta Lux

Loretta Lux is one of my favorite photographers if not my absolute favorite. She was born in Germany and attended school at Akademie der Bildenden K√ľnste there she studied painting with Gerd Winner. She gave up painting as her main medium and picked up a camera as the tool of choice. She was awarded the Infinity Award for Art in 2005 and has shown all over the world. Her work consists of these absolutely beautiful and eerily creepy portraits of children that stay with you in one way or another.

Her goal in her work is to use the children as a metaphor for childhood and innocence. She is meticulous every step of the way in creating her portraits. She has said herself that even though painting is not her medium of choice, that in composing every one of her portraits she goes about it like a painter would, blocking in the shapes and being aware of the color choices for both the subject and the background. Much of her work is digitally enhanced and retouched, but there is still a lot that comes from her and the camera. Many of the backdrops are either paintings she’s done herself in the past or from photos of her travel. She takes special care in her lighting to ensure there are no shadows in her photos, which in some ways gives the portrait a lack of depth, but in others you still can sense it.

One of the other things she is known for is the fact that she’s never really confirmed or denied how she makes her portraits aside from agreeing to retouching them. I love too how even though she’s made these portraits pretty generic in that you don’t really get a sense of the personality of the child she’s photographing, the viewer is still able to come up with some sort of narrative for the portrait.

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