Born in 1962 in Leningrad, now St. Petersburg, Alexey Titarenko has been taking photographs for over thirty years, in four major cities: St. Petersburg, Venice, Havana, and New York. Alexey Titarenko: The City is a Novel brings together, for the first time, prints from every phase of Titarenko’s career, including rarely exhibited photomontages from the his first major series, Nomenclature of Signs; key photographs from his groundbreaking series City of Shadows; and never-before-seen work produced within the past year.
The exhibition takes its title from Titarenko’s monograph of the same name, published in 2015 by Damiani editore and selected by the Wall Street Journal as one of the best photobooks of the year. Signed copies of the sold-out book will be available for sale for the duration of the exhibition. For Titarenko, the city not only shapes and influences each individual’s mindset and point of view; it is also a creative force, the architect of narratives in which each of us becomes his or her own distinct character. As an artist, his work is to bring to light these stories through his own lens, and to outline their symbolic meaning. As he writes in his essay City of Shadows, “Universal emotions perpetuated during the last century…constitute the main themes of my photographs, to the extent of transforming the most documentary among them into elements of a novel — not reportage, but a novel, whose central theme is the human soul.”
Titarenko’s photographs have been shown in over thirty solo exhibitions and over forty group exhibitions around the world. His work can be found in the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Baltimore Museum of Art; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Columbus Museum of Art; the George Eastman House, Rochester; the European House of Photography, Paris; the Musée de l’Élysée, Lausanne; the Musée Réattu, Arles; and the State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, among other institutions.
The City is a Novel
March 22 – May 20, 2017