January 30, 2014 - Philadelphia Museum of Art - Michael Snow
January 30, 2014

Michael Snow

Michael Snow, Authorization, 1969. Five instant silver prints (Polaroid 55), adhesive tape, mirror in metal frame, 21 1/2 x 17 1/2 inches. National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa.

Michael Snow:

February 1–April 27, 2014

Philadelphia Museum of Art
Honickman and Berman Galleries
2525 Pennsylvania Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19130
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 10am–5pm, 
Wednesday and Friday 10am–8:45pm


The Philadelphia Museum of Art will present the first exhibition in the United States in over four decades devoted solely to the photographic work of the acclaimed Canadian artist Michael Snow. One of the most influential experimental filmmakers of his generation, Snow is known and admired for his multi-disciplinary approach to art making. Photo-Centric will highlight this important aspect of his practice, exploring the intimate connections that exist between his work in photography, painting, sculpture, and film.

Developed in close collaboration with the artist, Photo-Centric is a focused survey of Snow’s photography-based work and presents key examples of his use of the medium over the past five decades. This body of work has been central to Snow’s investigation of the nature and limits of representation, articulated through an exploration of photography and its processes. According to Snow, “To extend the depth of what has been called ‘art’ into photography requires…making available to the spectator the amazing transformations the subject undergoes to become the photograph.”

Poised between two- and three-dimensionality, a number of works in this exhibition engage physically with the gallery space and the viewer, and are representative of Snow’s various approaches to photography and the various ways in which it “frames” vision. Each work exemplifies one or more of the strategies employed by Snow to explore this idea. Illumination, transparency, staging, simultaneity and sequence, size manipulation, cropping, and framing are brought into play and exposed for the part they play in the making of photographic images. 

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue published by the Museum in association with Yale University Press. It includes essays by Michael Snow, Adelina Vlas, Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art, and a foreword by Timothy Rub, The George D. Widener Director and Chief Executive Officer.

Public programs
Art After Five: Improvisations: Michael Snow and Thollem McDonas 
Friday, January 31, 5–8:45pm
Great Stair Hall
Snow and composer Thollem McDonas will present an improvisational, dual-piano concert.

In dialogue: Michael Snow and Adelina Vlas
Saturday, February 1, 2pm
Van Pelt Auditorium 
Michael Snow will join Adelina Vlas, Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art, in a conversation about the exhibition.

The Films of Michael Snow
This program is guest curated by filmmaker and writer J. Louise Makary.

Program A
Screenings will take place in the Van Pelt Auditorium on the following dates: 
Wednesday February 5 and Friday, February 21, 6:30pm
Wavelength, 1966–67, 45 minutes
Standard Time, 1967, 8 minutes
One Second in Montreal (1969), 26 minutes

Program B
Screenings will take place in the Van Pelt Auditorium on the following dates:
Friday, February 7 and Wednesday, February 19, 6:30pm
See You Later (Au Revoir), 1990, 18 minutes
To Lavoisier, Who Died in the Reign of Terror, 1991, 53 minutes

Program C
Wednesday February 12, 6:30pm
Reverberlin, 2006, 55 minutes

In addition, the film Presents (1981) will be screened at the University of Pennsylvania’s International House on Friday, April 25 at 7pm.

Social media:
Facebook / Twitter / Tumblr / YouTube / Instagram

The Philadelphia Museum of Art is one of the largest museums in the United States, with a collection of more than 227,000 works. At the core of its modern and contemporary art holdings are significant works by such celebrated artists as Pablo Picasso, Constantin Brancusi, Fernand Léger, and Joan Miró, as well as the largest and most important collection of work by Marcel Duchamp. The Museum’s expanding contemporary roster includes major works by Cy Twombly, Jasper Johns, Ellsworth Kelly, and Bruce Nauman. Exemplary pieces can also be seen in the Anne d’Harnoncourt Sculpture Garden, currently featuring works by Sol LeWitt, Ellsworth Kelly, Franz West, Claes Oldenburg, and Thomas Schütte, as well as a series of sculptures by Isamu Noguchi installed as part of the garden’s inaugural exhibition.

For additional press information and images, contact the press office at pressroom [​at​] philamuseum.org or T +1 215 684 7860. For general information, call +1 215 763 8100, or visit the Museum’s website at philamuseum.org.

Philadelphia Museum of Art
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