Tuesday, May 12, 2015

WORK OF THE WEEK: Day to Night, Coney Island by Stephen Wilkes

Stephen Wilkes
Day to Night, Coney Island
digital C-print
20 x 40 inches
30 x 60 inches
For over 150 years Coney Island has stood as one of the great American playgrounds. Offering a dreamlike oasis in the middle of New York's dense urban landscape Coney Island inspires the child in all of us to come alive. In Stephen Wilkes artfully curated image, Day to Night, Coney Island, viewers are drawn in by the glow of the spinning Ferris wheel and colorful tents of the amusement park juxtaposed with the seemingly infinite stretch of white sand beach and azure blue ocean dotted with billowing sails. The magical quality of this work encapsulates the spirit of Coney Island and inspires the same childlike awe that can be felt standing on the boardwalk. 

Wilkes is not the first artist to be inspired by Coney Island. The Wadsworth Atheneum has chosen the subject to celebrate the opening of their new special exhibition galleries with the show, Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland. As the museum explains, "this is the first major exhibition to use visual art as a lens to explore the lure that Coney Island exerted on American culture over a period of 150 years. An extraordinary array of artists viewed Coney Island as a microcosm of the American experience, from its beginnings as a watering hole for the wealthy, through its transformation into an entertainment mecca for the masses." The exhibition will be on view through May 31st. 

For more than two decades Stephen Wilkes has been widely recognized for his fine art and commercial photography. His photographs have been featured in leading magazines and periodicals including the New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair and Time. Wilkes’ awards and honors include the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award for Magazine Photography, Photographer of the Year from Adweek Magazine, Fine Art Photographer of the Year 2004 Lucie Award, and the Epson Creativity Award. His monograph, Ellis Island: Ghosts of Freedom was named one of Time Magazine’s 5 Best Photography Books of The Year in 2006. Wilkes’ work is in the permanent collection of the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House, Houston Museum of Fine Arts, Dow Jones Collection, Griffin Museum of Photography, Jewish Museum of New York, Library of Congress, Snite Museum of Art, The Historic New Orleans Collection and numerous private collections. 

Stephen Wilkes’ newest body of work, Day to Night, captures epic cityscapes, iconic landmarks, and magical human moments from day to the night. Wilkes explains, "I imagined changing time in a single photograph. I began to explore this fascination with time in a new series of photographs called: Day to Night. Photographing from one camera angle continuously for up to 15 hours, capturing the fleeting moments throughout the day and night. A select group of these images are then blended into one photograph, capturing the changing of time within a single frame."  

Click to view a time lapse video from Stephen Wilkes of his Day to Night, Coney Island photographs used to create this unique piece.

As part of our celebration of Coney Island Cavalier Galleries is please to offer a collection of vintage Coney Island photographs now available for sale.

Morris Engel (1918-2005)
Coney Island Embrace, 1938
14 x 11 inches
Morris Engel (1918-2005)
Drying Off, Coney Island, NYC, 1938    
14 X 11 inches
Morris Engel (1918-2005)
Inner Tube, Coney Island, NYC, 1938    
14 X 11 inches
Morris Engel (1918-2005)
Woman on Beach, Coney Island, NYC, 1938    
14 X 11 inches
Robert Farber (b. 1944)
Cyclone, Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York, Edition of 25, 1981    
fine art paper pigment print
30 X 40 inches
Contact us for pricing and inquiries about this work: 203.869.3664 or art@cavaliergalleries.com.