David Benjamin Sherry

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Pink Genesis 2022 (Aperture)

Pink Genesis is a limited-edition artist’s book of unique photograms by celebrated photographer David Benjamin Sherry. Sherry is a magician of the darkroom. Celebrated for his use of vivid color and his skill with traditional analog photographic techniques, he has established himself as a leading voice in contemporary photography. His work has often examined the monumental landscapes of the American West and the environmental challenges the region faces. Pink Genesis introduces Sherry’s equally intriguing but lesser-known series of striking, large-scale, cameraless color photograms, laboriously made by hand in the darkroom. Using cardboard masks to create mesmerizing geometric forms and incorporating his own body into the images, Sherry actively references histories of photography, as well as artists such as Josef Albers and Robert Rauschenberg, captivating viewers with a fresh way of seeing. The series, inspired by James Bidgood’s 1971 cult film Pink Narcissus, almost entirely shot within Bidgood’s New York apartment, explores how “a small interior space—specifically, a space of queer imagination—can be a site of fantasy and possibility,” as Lucy Gallun, associate curator of photography at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, states in her essay for the book. For Sherry, the private, contemplative space of the darkroom serves as a space to think through the intersections of identity, abstraction, and the meditative possibilities of monochrome. This exquisitely produced book, the first ever dedicated to Sherry’s photograms, comes in an edition of 750 and collects twenty-nine of these one-of-a-kind works that delight in the pleasures of form, color, and coded Queer reference. Each book is individually signed by the artist.


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American Monuments 2019 (Radius)


A vivid portrait of the assault on America's parks and forests

David Benjamin Sherry: American Monuments is a landscape photography project that captures the spirit and intrinsic value of America’s threatened system of national monuments. In April 2017 an executive order called for the review of the 27 national monuments created since January 1996. In December 2017 the final report called on the president to shrink four national monuments and change the management of six others, recommending that areas in Maine, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans be offered for sale, specifically for oil drilling and coal and uranium mining. American Monuments focuses on the areas under review, with special emphasis on those that have already been decimated. Sherry documents these pristine, sacred and wildly diverse areas using the traditional, historic 8x10" large format. The resulting 31 photographs—all tipped in to the book by hand—not only convey the beauty of these important and ecologically diverse sites, but also shed light upon the plight of the perennially exploited landscape of the American West.

American photographer David Benjamin Sherry (born 1981) specializes in large-format film photography made with meticulous attention to analog photographic processes. Sherry’s use of vibrant monochrome color began while studying for his MFA at Yale. Working closely with master printer and photographer Richard Benson, Sherry discovered that, through analog printing techniques, he could manipulate color film to chromatic extremes. For Sherry, the vibrant colors he incorporates into the work are a conduit for his intense, sometimes mystical connections to the natural world and reflect his own queer experience of traversing the American West.

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Earth Changes 2014 (Morel)

David Benjamin Sherry’s large, spiral-bound book Earth Changes shows monochromatic photographs of natural sites throughout the West, from Zion Canyon to Death Valley. He achieves these monochrome images in the darkroom by pushing the cyan, magenta and yellow filters in specific combinations. Sherry slightly overexposes the negatives to retain the rich detail in the shadows of these landscapes. Landscape photographs of the West cannot help but evoke the historical work of photographers like Ansel Adams, who depicted nature as a spiritual place. Many of these early photographs carried out the goals of Manifest Destiny, showing land in the West as ideal for the taking. Sherry’s work subverts this tradition by taking a new look at these sites, revealing the subjective nature of visual representation.

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Quantum Light 2012 (Damiani/Salon94)

David Benjamin Sherry (born 1981) graduated with an MFA in photography from the Yale School of Art in 2007. Just three years later, in 2010, his color-saturated photographs became the face of the Greater New York exhibition at MoMA/PS1; that same year, he was named as one of the 50 up-and- coming American talents by The New York Times T magazine. In Quantum Light, Sherry’s second publication, he continues his exploration of vivid color, ramping up the saturation and expanding his subject matter, in works incorporating landscapes, collage, still life, abstraction, portraiture and sculpture. A conversation between Sherry and Collier Schorr serves as preface to this beautifully produced clothbound volume, which is published to coincide with the artist’s first New York solo show at Salon 94.

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Its Time 2009 (Damiani)

It's Time is New York-based photographer David Benjamin Sherry's first monograph. Sherry has developed his own penchant for hyper-saturated, hot, bright colors with a touch of psychedelia. His photographs range from reality to fantasy, from portraits to abstractions, landscapes to fashion. Drawing inspiration from contemporaries such as Wolfgang Tillmans to past generation artists such as Derek Jarmon and Kenneth Anger, he has exhibited in Berlin, Vienna, Los Angeles and New York.

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