Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Daniel Nicoletta at Electric Works

Electric Works Gallery
More Glitter — Less Bitter
Photographs by Daniel Nicoletta, 1975–Present
June 4 — July 10, 2010

Prompted by SFMike's account of the opening of Daniel Nicoletta's show at Electric Works, yesterday I went to see this show of photographs documenting gay life & politics in San Francisco. The images are equal parts photojournalism, politics & art. I think they make an impact because they so clearly reflect an insider's point of view. The show is thoughtfully arranged so that pictures of Harvey Milk & the Castro in the 1970's are juxtaposed with scenes of the filming of Gus Van Sant's Milk movie 30 years later. Especially neat is the photo of Harvey milk in circus clown drag, paired with a mirror-image re-creation of the pose by Sean Penn.

Many of the photos are in color, to impressive effect. I liked the blazing, saturated colors of Juanito More, October 8, 1996, showing the drag queen posing defiantly in her dressing room. There is also a very cool, very wide picture of the cast of Pearls Over Shanghai, in homage to Richard Avedon's group portrait of Warhol's Factory.

As at previous visit to this gallery, I was personally greeted by a fellow who introduced himself as Richard & whom I took to be the gallery owner. He was good enough to let me know that the gallery, in an effort to have something for everyone, offers a limited edition mini-print from each show for a reasonable $40.


Civic Center said...

Electric Works is my favorite art gallery in San Francisco, partly because it's part of the artistic process itself, making high-end prints and otherwise helping to manufacture art objects. They also seem to have the best, most relaxed opening parties with the most interesting artists and attendant crowds.

Axel Feldheim said...

SFMike: I haven't had the pleasure of attending an opening party, but I have liked the shows I've been to after seeing them in your blog. The gallery does have a decidedly unpretentious atmosphere.