Sunday, December 21, 2014

Fred Lyon

Photo: Fred Lyon

Certainly took me long enough (considering I live but a few blocks away), but I finally got to see the Fred Lyon exhibit at The Harvey Milk Photo Center, and I'm certainly glad I made the "effort," cause it was quite the unexpected treat! Mr. Lyon was a commercial photographer in San Francisco who also shot extensively on the streets of his hometown during the late forties, fifties and early sixties. His compositions betray a keen eye, and while one is rather reticent to make the comparison: the subject matter, time period and square format certainly bring to mind a West Coast version of Ms. Vivian Maier- although it's safe to say that their life styles were also miles apart and that he in no way approached his street environment with the single minded dedication and ferocity of Ms. Maier.

Nevertheless, his work is an absolute joy to behold! The prints, which I'm assuming are inkjets (confirmed) are gorgeous, and I have noticed that unlike their silver gelatin counterparts, inkjets printed in matte finish can really sing- as do these! Always great to see how these pioneers made work as eye catching as anything today, and without the technological advances so many of us can't seem to do without.

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