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Life, Death, Beauty and Garbage

Selected Work Pictures 1987-1997

September 10 - November 12, 2016

Artist reception, Saturday, September 10th from 5 - 8 pm


PDNB Gallery is pleased and honored to present Geof Kern's second solo exhibition this fall. It will highlight work from 1987-1997. This time frame marks one of Geof Kern's (b. 1950, New York City) most recognized periods of innovative fashion/advertising/editorial photography in his career. 

His photographs are conceptual, often including surrealist references. Kern manipulated the medium (pre-photoshop) using multiple exposure, collage, photo sculpture and dioramas that soon catapulted his presence in the commercial photography world. 

During this remarkable decade, his clients included important fashion houses and department stores: Bloomingdales, Selfridges in London, Takashimaya, Matsuda, Alexander Julian, and Neiman Marcus. Magazines he worked with included Esquire, Rolling Stone, Atlas, Discover, Eco Magazine, Spy (he was an editor one year), and Detour. 

His work was highly sought after by some of the most acclaimed art directors of the era including John Jay, Fred Woodward, B.W. Honeycutt, D.J. Stout (Texas Monthly) and Rip Georges.  

Kern is not based in New York, a city recognized as the capital of the creative arena. He has lived and worked in Dallas since 1978, while raising a large family. This exhibition gives the Dallas area (and beyond) the opportunity to see what Kern has forged in our own backyard. Some locals are familiar with his assignments with Dallas based, Neiman Marcus. But most are unfamiliar with the breadth of his accomplishments working with national and international clients such as the ones listed above.  

Work prints from this period will be exhibited along with modern prints of the unique portfolio covers he presented to clients. This is a very distinct component of the exhibition that will illustrate Kern's dedication to his work. These mixed media covers  include drawings, collage, paint and text, that offer his personal imprint on each portfolio.

Vintage prints will also be included in this industrious installation. These are gelatin silver prints that were made by the artist soon after the photograph was taken. In the art world, these are the most coveted prints to collect since a very small, finite number exist.

This is not the first time an art gallery has profiled work by a fashion/ advertising photographer in this area. Richard Avedon, Irving Penn (now at the Dallas Museum of Art) and Annie Lebovitz have been celebrated in local museum exhibitions. And The Dallas Contemporary has explored the fine line separating art and commerce with shows by Juergen Teller, Mario Testino, and Bruce Weber (upcoming).

Geof Kern's photographs are in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Art, Houston and the Musée Des Arts Décoratifs, Paris. He received the prestigious Infinity Award in Applied Photography from the International Center of Photography (ICP) in New York as well as many other notable honors in his profession.

Artist reception, Saturday, September 10, 2016, From 5 – 8 PM

Click to view selections from the exhibition