David Scheinbaum Mos Def

Fri., November 1, 6-8pm

 

Photography Book Release Party

& Special Benefit Sale for 516 ARTS

Book Cover Hip Hop Janet Russek Whole Corset on Dummy Book Cover The Tenuous Stem

516 ARTS announces a book release party for photography icons of New Mexico, David Scheinbaum and Janet Russek.  David Scheinbaum's HIP HOP: Portraits of an Urban Hymn is a volume of photographs and essays that explore hip-hop music.  Scheinbaum's photographs are accompanied by essays including an introduction by Brian Hardgroove of the music group Public Enemy.  Janet Russek's The Tenuous Stem, published by Radius Books, includes an essay written by art scholar and critic MaLin Wilson-Powell, addressing Russek's creative process.

David and Janet are generously offering selected original prints for sale at this event, with a portion of proceeds benefiting the nonprofit 516 ARTS.  They are also signing a limited edition of 11" x 17" posters of their work, produced just for this event, 100% of the proceeds from which will benefit 516 ARTS.

The celebration will include a live DJ from the scene of David Scheinbaum's work, and refreshments from Tractor Brewing.

 
DAVID SCHEINBAUM- HIP HOP: Portraits of an Urban Hymn
Introduction by Brian Hardgroove.  Text by Michael Eric Dyson, Gaye Theresa Johnson.  Interview with Frank H. Goodyear III.  Published by Damiani, 2013.

Since its inception in the 1970s, hip hop music and the culture surrounding it has become a hugely influential and popular musical form in America and around the world.  Its popularity extends beyond the urban centers where it was born, and pervades and influences youth culture around the globe.  However, few artists have created serious and powerful photographs that explore the breadth of the phenomenon.  With this volume, David Scheinbaum has done just that.  His portraits of Erykah Badu, Chuck D., George Clinton, Common, Mos Def, Del-Tha Funkee Homosapien, Sage Francis, Professor Griff, KRS One, Mike Relm, Tajai, Wu-Tang Clan and Yelawolf (among others) approach hip hop as a positive cultural influence akin to the youth movement of the 1960s.  Scheinbaum's photographs are accompanied by essays by Gaye Theresa Johnson and Michael Eric Dyson, an artist conversation with Frank H. Goodyear III and an introduction by Brian Hardgroove of Public Enemy.

This story begins as a special father-son adventure.  It was David's son Zac who introduced him to hip hop 14 years ago when David chaperoned Zac and his friends to a concert venue in Albuquerque, the Sushine Theater.  The whole scene caught David's eye - the dress, the look, the style, the handshake, the artists, the music and especially the relationship between the concertgoers and the performers.  It reminded David of his youth in the 1960s when then too music became "a voice for the generation."


JANET RUSSEK- The Tenuous Stem
Text by MaLin Wilson Powell.  Published by Radius Books, 2013.

In 1993, long time New Mexico resident, artist and gallery owner Janet Russek began a series of still lifes of ripe squashes, peaches and pears whose rounded forms echoed the plenitude of pregnancy.  Using only natural light, she then started to photograph vegetables and roots whose tendrils, reaching for the sun, expressed all of life's striving and aspiration, and finally, the maturing plant, evoking the inevitable downward spiral into decay.  In subsequent years, Russek has expanded the project to include pregnant women photographed at close range so that bellies and breasts become almost abstract.  Her haunting portraits of dolls explore the darker, more psychologically complex side of childhood and parenting, while the Memory series includes photos of significant personal objects that harken to the past, and take this volume full circle.  The Tenuous Stem also includes an essay written by art sholar and critic MaLin Wilson-Powell, addressing Russek's creative process.

The work in this book includes her still life images of ripe fruits, vegetables and flowers in the photographic tradition of artists such as Weston, Penn and Mapplethorpe; her floral collection of still lifes; her pregnant bellies series titled Beautiful Vulnerabilities; and her Memory series depicting iconic nostalgic objects out of her past, memorabilia from her parents' era such as corsets, shoe trees and a manual typewriter.

MaLin Wilson-Powell writes in the forward to Janet's book, "[Janet's] compositions regularly frame fragility in a bold, uncompromising manner.  The 'tenuous stems' overall have the feel of drawings and etchings, graphic structures composed with lines that literally draw the eye through the image."

 
David Scheinbaum worked with the preeminent photo historian Beaumont Newhall from 1978 until Newhall's death in 1993.  Janet Russek was Eliot Porter's assistant, as well as his picture editor for his monographs from 1980 until his death in 1990.  Together they operate Scheinbaum & Russek Ltd., private fine art photography dealers and consultants in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Their firm represents the estate of Beaumont and Nancy Newhall and Eliot Porter.  Both have exhibited internationally and are represented in numerous museum collections.

 

IMAGES: David Scheinbaum, Mos Def (Yasiin Bey), 2002; BOOK COVER: HIP HOP: Portraits of an Urban Hymn; Janet Russek, Corset with Orange Curtain, 2011; BOOK COVER: The Tenuous Stem