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Photos by Ari Marcopoulos

The cliché goes something like this: the public image of architecture begins littered with children holding balloons surrounded by waving flags and ends without a person in sight of an incandescently lit interior under the burning glow of dusk skies. The first instance is meant to lubricate the development process; the second is to communicate good taste. The first is performed by architects and architectural renderers; the second by architectural photographers. There are too many versions of good taste in architectural photography to enumerate, and the glowing interior at dusk is only one. Yes, it may be dated (to Julius Shulman perhaps) as is the tendency for those who refine in search of good taste. Ari Marcopoulos is as interested in capturing a contemporary sensibility as Julius Shulman but as his friend I can testify that he is constitutionally allergic to good taste. Although his images are resplendent with fine art and design objects his photographs bring these objects to life in a way that they are not free standing and therefore are not as culturally mobile as signs for discriminating luxury. His photographs are documentary in that he either photographs things in action or he enlists his friends and collaborators to put things to use, often in ways that environments are not intended. He is more interested in capturing where buildings get tagged or used by skateboarders than in the exquisiteness of their detailing. He is less a critical outsider than a trade secret. Just look at the architects he is shooting the work of. I believe his sensibility to bring buildings and cities to contemporary life points to one of the futures for architectural photography; a future less concerned with confirming good taste than confirming vitality and relevance.
- Greg Lynn

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
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