Harry Callahan, Collages, ca. 1957. International Center of Photography, Gift of Louis F. Fox, 1980 (76.1980) © The Estate of Harry Callahan, courtesy Pace Gallery

“A Trillion Sunsets: A Century of Image Overload” &
“ACTUAL SIZE! Photography at Life Scale”
Curated by David Campany, ICP
January 28, 2022—May 2, 2022
79 Essex Street, New York, NY 10002

The International Center of Photography announces the winter/spring 2022 exhibition schedule, featuring two thematic exhibitions that question basic assumptions about photography. A Trillion Sunsets: A Century of Image Overload and ACTUAL SIZE! Photography at Life Scale will be on view from January 28 through May 2, 2022. Both exhibitions are curated by David Campany, ICP’s managing director of programs.

A Trillion Sunsets: A Century of Image Overload

This exhibition explores a compulsive fascination with the proliferation of photographic images. In the 1920s, with the rapid increase in illustrated magazines and newspapers, commentators asked whether society could survive the visual inundation. Artists looked to mass media imagery and archives of all kinds to rethink the world around them.

From picture scrapbooks to internet memes, from collage and image appropriation to art made by algorithms, A Trillion Sunsets: A Century of Image Overload offers powerful insights and new perspectives on the long love-hate relationship with images. Among the over 50 photographs, books, and films on view, including some 20 images from ICP’s collection. 

Artists include Hannah Höch, Nakeya Brown, Sheida Soleimani, Walker Evans, Sara Greenberger-Rafferty, Guanyu Xu, Hank Willis Thomas, Robert Capa, Barbara Morgan, Richard Prince, Louise Lawler, Andy Warhol, Pacifico Silano and John Baldessari.

ACTUAL SIZE! Photography at Life Scale

From postcards to giant billboards, photographs are printed in almost any dimension. This exhibition explores what happens when a photograph is the very same size as its subject matter—when a photograph of a bus is the size of a bus when a photograph of Muhammad Ali’s fist is its actual size when a photograph of hailstones records their sizes for posterity. Playful yet philosophical, ACTUAL SIZE! will offer over 20 images that share the exact dimensions of life itself. Conceived especially for ICP’s unique double-height gallery, the exhibition rethinks photography’s fundamental qualities as a perplexing and elastic medium. Image makers of every kind, from fine artists to advertisers, have explored the strange magic that happens when the photograph becomes an uncanny double for the world it depicts. 

Works by Jeff Wall, Ace Lehner, Laura Letinsky, Kija Lucas, Aspen Mays, Tanya Marcuse and others share the walls with anonymous posters, magazine spreads and book covers. 

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