Museum Moments
Photographs by John Rosenthal

Opening Reception: Sunday February 26, 2012   1-5pm

Exhibition dates: Feb 26- April 28 2012
Gallery hours: M-F 10-6, S 10-2
The Framer's Corner, 210 West Main St, Carrboro, NC 27510  919.929.3166

About the Artist

John Rosenthal’s photographs have been exhibited throughout the north and south. His one-person shows include exhibits at Gregg Museum of Art and Design, The National Humanities Center, The Asheville Museum of Art, The National Academy of Sciences in Washington D.C., Chapel Hill, Duke, the NIH in Bethesda, Maryland, the Panopticon Gallery of Boston, the Center for the Study of the American South, Wake Forest, Elon College, Salem College, Hollins College, the School of Design at North Carolina State University, the Tyndall Gallery, and The Green Hill Center for North Carolina Art. In 1998 a collection of Mr. Rosenthal’s photographs, Regarding Manhattan was published by Safe Harbor Books, and in 2005 his work was included in Quartet: Four North Carolina Photographers, also published by Safe Harbor. In August of 2008, on the 3rd anniversary of Katrina,  an exhibit of his Lower Ninth Ward photographs, “Then, Absence,” was displayed at the New Orleans African-American Museum  and Boston’s Panopticon Gallery. In 2008 Mr. Rosenthal was awarded a North Carolina Arts Fellowship.

Artist Statement

Museums are peculiar places and I like to photograph them—the paintings, the sculptures, the museum itself, the people looking at art and each other. Some people go to museums to pass the time, to walk around in a quiet place. Some go to learn something – an illumination of some sort. Some go because they like to dress up. Paintings and sculptures call out to us, in their odd, old voices, from the lost moment of their creation, and demand our attention. Do we give it to them? Rarely. If we’re lucky. Sometimes, I believe, a painting on a museum wall, surrounded by observers, possesses the same visual power as a natural landscape. Perhaps this has to do with the radiating light of its history—the fame of a painting, if you will—which can be caught only sideways, in between elbows; or perhaps it’s because some paintings are simply amazing, and we too become amazing, at least briefly, when we look at them. Photographing in a museum I don't pretend to capture the mystery of artworks. That would be impossible. But a tension exists – between our ordinariness and their perfection, between our assembly and their isolation, between what we think and what they think – and it’s that tension I’m after. We look at art, but art looks at us too. This interchange can be a small liveliness that floats across a room.

John Rosenthal: Man Reading at the Metropolitan Museum, NYC. 2005

Man Reading at the Metropolitan Museum, NYC. 2005

26" print. Archival Pigment Ink. Mamiya 6 camera

John Rosenthal: Warhol's Double Elvis at MoMA, NYC 2011

Warhol's "Double Elvis" at MoMA, NYC 2011

32" print. Archival Pigment Ink. Nikon D700 Digital.

John Rosenthal: Bohemian Ewer at The Metropolitan Museum, NYC. 1998

Bohemian Ewer at The Metropolitan Museum, NYC. 1998

24" print. Archival Pigment Ink. Nikon D70. 35 mm.