Since the late '70s, Jeff Wall has been making
photographs that look and act like paintings.
Presented as large transparencies in light boxes
affixed to the wall, they mark a dramatic departure
from the compressed 8 x 10 format of traditional
Though they seem to capture realistic, common
occurrences and compositions—from a sudden
gust of wind in a suburban field or potential
laborers waiting for work to teens before a nightclub—
they are painstakingly choreographed.
Deeply influenced by the work of Velázquez and
Goya, as well as the language of film, Wall's
pictorial theaters combine the commanding
physical presence and emotive dramaturgy of
Western masterpieces with the hyper-realist décor
of contemporary cinema.
Spanning Wall's career from 1978 to the present,
this retrospective presents a robust assembly of
40 ambitious and celebrated pictures, including
five recent pictures to be shown for the first time in
North America.
The Museum of Modern Art
Jeff Wall
February 25 through May 14, 2007
11 West 53rd Street
New York, NY
T. + 1 212 708 9400