February 13 2011 to April 3 2011 – Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Protest marches, birthday parties, weddings, concerts, and political rallies—from blue collar to black tie, Larry Fink has photographed gatherings of every sort during his 40-year career. He is keenly attuned to the emotional vibrations that animate social events. Deploying basic capacities of photography—framing, flash, depth of field—he shows us gestures, textures, and fleeting expressions we would otherwise miss.
Fink is, among other things, a society photographer. But this does not mean he flatters the elite. Under contract with Vanity Fair from 2000 to 2009, Fink documented the magazine’s annual Oscar-night party. The Academy Awards have always been equal parts ceremony and celebration; the very presence of Fink—who is neither paparazzo nor photojournalist—is just one indication of how the parties, and Hollywood culture, have evolved into the twenty-first century. Mainstream media coverage gives everyone a glimpse of glamour, but Fink provides a different kind of access. The revelation of Fink’s society photographs is not that celebrities are superficial, but that their humanity is profound and complex.
All prints are lent by the artist and were made in 2010. Larry Fink thanks Vanity Fair for allowing him to participate in their annual elegant salute to the Academy Awards and the Oscar recipients.