Portraits of Artists by Orestes Gonzalez 2010-2012
This 3 year photo series begain as a simple walk-thru to some artist studios during ‘Open Studio Week’ years ago. What developed was something surprising: a strong sense of curiosity about how artists live and work. LIC is brash, gritty,commercial, and industrial. But, seen historically, its should be seen for what it’s always been: a support system for its more glamorous sister across the river. Without the communities that surround and support it, Manhattan would not be able to shine.
"I’ve tried to go further, and show another side of LIC: through the artists that work here. Beyond its imposing industrial facades, clangy trains and transient commuters, it is also humane, artistic, historical and a center with its own independent personality." If you have the opportunity to see his show, Orestes breaks down the project into diptychs. One is a human portrait of the artist, the other a portrait of the workspace.
"As an architect, I’ve always thought of rooms as “people”, alive with personality and historic energy. Therefore I’ve given importance to both equally." What you experience with these images is the humanity of the artists that thrive beyond the concrete walls of the industrial landscape of Long Island City.”