July 2014



Hello, ladies!



Paul Hagedorn (b. 1956) built his photographic reputation on a taxonomy of American and Western European cultural icons – the Eiffel Tower, Italian street scenes, Southern landscapes reminiscent of the Hudson River School – places he captured for their ethereal, legendary beauty using a classical documentary style. Countering this meditative work is the rambunctious spirit of his early career in advertising graphics, where he was a hands-on image-maker, similar to a Hollywood producer. His work with nudes reinvigorates this directorial excitement. He seeks visceral results, immediate effect, moving away from the impressionistic to the active and expressionistic. His nudes are exciting, involving and affective. His subjects emanate strength and mystery.

Insofar as creating fantasies and reinvigorating them, the The Nudes series echoes elements of Hagedorn’s other recent series Peachtree Battle, Imaginary War Games, where, in his Atlanta, Georgia, studio, he has made models, painted backdrops, rummaged figurines and props, and assembled installations that replicate the infamous boy’s release: imaginary war games. Riffing on these childhood fantasies, plus video gaming, TV news, and World War II “B” movies, he has fabricated an array of territorial battles on air, land and sea. The work is cinematic, reminiscent of mid-century black-and-white films, and the tone is entirely new: explosive and blazing bright.