| Reflections In Art + Culture: William Mortensen: American Grotesque at Stephen Romano Gallery



William Mortensen: American Grotesque at Stephen Romano Gallery

"Off For The Sabbath" from "A Pictorial Compendium of Witchcraft"
Legendary, black and white landscape photographer, Ansel Adams, called photographer William Mortensen "the anti-Christ" and "the Devil" for his unorthodox heretical take on the art of photography. Whereas Adams was a "straight-laced" realist in his approach to camera work; Mortensen's Pictorial style of shooting was heavily founded in his background as a painter and illustrator, manipulating photographs to fabricate romantic and surreal imagery otherwise impossible. Habitually, he would razorblade-scratch, pencil-mark, and employ unique screen-texture methods to add a more illustrative element to his work. In truth, before there was Photoshop, there was Mortenson.

            Though Mortensen, through a chance meeting with director Cecil B. DeMille, began his photographic career taking studio portraits of Hollywood actors and actresses like the 1933 sweetheart of King Kong, Fay Wray, his works shifted to a more darker, cinematic narrative that not only challenged the methods of photography, but of that of its content as well. Mortenson shot dreamlike stills so expressive it told an entire story in a single frame. 

            "A Pictorial Compendium of Witchcraft"; a tremendous occult driven photo series that was once thought to never exist until they were recently unearthed, as well as other hauntingly beautiful works by Mortenson are nearing its final show dates at the spectacular The Stephen Romano Gallery exhibition William Mortensen: American Grotesque, running through November 30, 2014. Like other forgotten and scorned geniuses of years past such as Nicholas Tesla, William Mortenson has finally begun to receive the acclamation he and his pioneering works have long been owed.

Due to the overwhelming positive response received, 
the exhibition has been extended until 12/31/14!
 DO NOT MISS three more amazing simultaneous exhibits now showing at
  The Stephen Romano Gallery


"William Mortensen: American Grotesque
Through December 31st
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