THE RECURRING DREAM
October 20th – December 3rd, 2016
Reception for the Artist: Thursday, October 20th
New Publication Available
The Fahey/Klein Gallery is pleased to present The Recurring Dream, an exhibition of work by contemporary photographer Rocky Schenck. The exhibition coincides with the release of Schenck’s latest publication, The Recurring Dream (University of Texas Press, 2016). Featured in the book and exhibition is Schenck’s much anticipated color work. Known for his dreamlike and darkly psychological images, the addition of saturated color adds a brilliant and enthralling element to Schenck’s images. Working from black and white prints, the artist individually hand tints each large photograph with color oil paint. Reminiscent of early 20th century photographs, the hand tinted pieces take on a new complexity and play with the viewers’ sense of nostalgia, reality, and the surreal.
The scenes depicted in Schenck’s photographs include landscapes and pictorial narratives that explore elements of beauty, humor, isolation, and death—often at the same time. Film director William Friedkin notes in the publication’s Introduction, “Turn each page, and you will enter a new world, a magical journey filled with what seems like childhood’s buried memories surrounded by nature’s living ghosts.” Whether Schenck’s landscapes are real or imagined becomes part of the mystery surrounding the artist’s work.
Schenck’s many artistic influences include Gregg Toland’s hyper-realistic cinematography in Citizen Kane, as well as, Karl Freund’s expressionistic visual language in such films as Metropolis and Dracula. In his afterword to The Recurring Dream, Rocky Schenck considers the role of the subconscious and cinema in his work, “My dreams play a very important part in my life and in the creation of my work. I can usually remember my dreams—or fragments from them—and I look forward to going to sleep each night so I can begin the most unpredictable part of my day. Occasionally I translate my dreams into photographs with the help of old friends or total strangers who wander into my life. Dreams are like movies to me, and films have always been one of my great obsessions. When I create my photographs, it’s almost like I am shooting a ‘still’ from one of my cinematic dreams.”
Raised in Texas, Rocky Schenck began writing, directing, and photographing short experimental films at a young age. Schenck moved to Los Angeles and began working in film, directing short films and music videos. Schenck’s first publication, Rocky Schenck: Photographs (University of Texas Press, 2003) received much critical acclaim. Rocky Schenck’s work has been exhibited and collected internationally. Schenck lives and works in Hollywood, California.