James Welling: Planograph
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James Welling: Planograph @ Maureen Paley, London

Sat 23 Nov 2019 to Sun 12 Jan 2020

James Welling: Planograph @ Maureen Paley

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Open: Temporary Closure

21 Herald Street, E2 6JT, London, UK
Open: Temporary Closure


James Welling: Planograph


James Welling: Planograph
to Sun 12 Jan 2020
Temporary Closure

Maureen Paley presents the fourth solo exhibition at the gallery by James Welling.

Maureen Paley James Welling 1

Maureen Paley James Welling 2

Maureen Paley James Welling 7

Maureen Paley James Welling 6

Maureen Paley James Welling 5

Maureen Paley James Welling 3

Maureen Paley James Welling 4

‘Greek and Hellenistic antiquities are the subject of Planograph. I started photographing ancient objects in museums ten years ago and in June I visited Greece for the first time.

When I took up photography in my twenties, I thought of the medium as a time machine. This summer as I processed my digital camera files from Greece to mimic black and white 19th century film—white skies and dark earth tones—I realised that I was looping back to this early intuition about photography. Modelling 19th century technology is a form of time travel, a visual return to the albums of early archaeological expeditions, the first photographic imaginings of Greece.

Recently I discovered flexible plate lithography, a form of planographic printing. Planographic plates print from a flat surface, as opposed to relief printing, such as etching. I image my plates on a laser printer, sponge with water and ink with traditional artist’s oil paint. Rather than printing the result, I present the inked surfaces as photographic objects.

I came to photography through books printed by such legendary houses as the Triton Press, Meridian Gravure and Rapoport Printing. In the matte tonalities and halftone dots of Planograph, I am paying tribute to the 20th century printers who introduced me to photographic seeing.’
– James Welling

For this exhibition, examples from the Degrade series have been added to punctuate the planographic works.

© James Welling, courtesy Maureen Paley, London

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