Gregory Halpern: Buffalo, at Transformer Station
A solo exhibition of photography and sculpture at Transformer Station, November 2022–January 2023
Transformer Station presents a mid-career exhibition for photographer Gregory Halpern, born and raised in Buffalo, New York—photographs made in his hometown over the past fifteen years. The solo project will fill the entire exhibition space with color images and sculptures created by Halpern which depict aspects of this once-majestic industrial city. Over his career, Halpern has honed a unique pictorial language that combines documentary reportage with a poetic surrealism; he frames his subjects obliquely, often in couplets or series, building a multivalent perspective of each. He builds an intimate skein of images depicting people, architecture, the monumental and small moments.
Halpern’s practice is firmly rooted in the American social documentary tradition, beginning with Dorothea Lange and the other Farm Security Administration photographers working in the 1930s. Overwhelmingly interested in communicating aspects of various social conditions throughout the United States, he has concentrated his artistic work on the publication of photo books rather than gallery presentations. Halpern studied at Harvard with English photographer Chris Killip, whose groundbreaking book of black and white images of Northern England—In Flagrante (1988)—set a new standard for visual storytelling in the photo book. Halpern took up this mantle in a series of award-winning books published by small presses, as well as Aperture and MACK publications. These include Omaha Sketchbook (2009), A. (2011), ZZYZX (2016), Confederate Moons (2018), and Soleil cou coupé (2020). Halpern’s pictures reach beyond well-defined subjects into the tangential; the work tackles head on broader issues of class and equity in a post-capitalist society.
Recent museum shows include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; International Center of Photography, NY; and the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation, Paris.
Halpern received his BA in history at Harvard and his MFA at California College of the Arts. He resides in Rochester with his family and teaches at the Rochester Institute of Technology.
GREGORY HALPERN, BUFFALO | NOVEMBER 2022–JANUARY 2023
1460 West 29th Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44113