Had the pleasure of seeing Melissa Ann Pinney's Girl Ascending, replete with its gorgeous reproductions. There's a lot of Larry Fink in these images, with their stolen moments and fleeting glances set amidst the trappings of aspiring high society- without his artful tricks of light. There's also a lot of the direct intimacy found in the photography of Jock Sturges- without the "naked' sexual tension. What you do get are very revealing, very intimate, very beautiful images that capture both the public rituals and private moments of reflection that mark and define this period of discovery in a girl's transition into womanhood- images that practically place you there.
How often does that happen? Most times I am acutely aware that I am viewing a photograph, an object- whether I'm leaning in to observe detail, or leaning back to enjoy and take it all in. Not that that's particularly good or bad- just a given. Many of Pinney's images however, like most good films, allow one to ignore that physical barrier and view them as if... actually witnessing them! And that's pretty impressive- no matter how you look at it.
Photo: Melissa Ann Pinney