Prominent local lensman Tom Blanchford recently returned to his much-loved California to shoot the last in a four-part art photo series, entitled ‘Midnight Modern IV’. The new exhibition comprises 10 large-scale images championing dreamy Modernist architecture, alongside some pretty covetable cars and idyllic pools too!
Shot entirely at night (as with the rest of the series), there is a mysterious, nostalgic edge to Tom’s artistic captures. ‘For me it was alluring to show a dark side of the town so famous for its sunshine. The moonlight adds a dimension to things that is almost impossible for us to experience with our own senses,’ Tom tells in his promotion for this show.
The photographer also muses on California’s unique geography and how the state’s climate gives rise to a distinct, deep blue sky; a midnight blue and moonlight, which he finds to be ideal for his long-exposure technique. ‘Each image in the series, captured only by moonlight and devoid of people, creates a stage that invites the viewer to script their own narrative behind the walls of these amazing Modernist masterpieces,’ he adds.
Preceding series locations have included iconic properties such as the Kaufmann Desert House, Edris House and Frank Sinatra’s Twin Palms Estate. This time around, look out for the ‘alien landscapes’ of John Lautner’s visionary Sheats Goldstein Residence, and The Black Desert House by Oller and Pejic.
As Tom’s exposures distill any number of imagined tales into a single moment, it’s as easy to believe that these iconic properties had been documented in the 1950s rather than present-day. Just as the photographer intended, this only adds to the intrigue: ‘the images act as portals in time, where it seems these moments exist in both places at once.’
‘Midnight Modern’ IV by Tom Blachford
January 31st to March 3rd
Opening Night, Saturday February 10th
Michael Reid Sydney
Mezzanine Level, 105 Kippax Street, Surry Hills, Sydney