Mitch Epstein

Village Voice, Short List, Exhibition Review, May 2001

By Vince Aletti

…Taking "Recreation" as its theme, this show of nine photographs from 1973 to 2000 doesn't attempt to sum up Epstein's career, but it does shed some timely light on its range and heft. As one of the best American color photographers, Epstein brings such subtlety and assurance to his pictures that each one feels not just ideal but inevitable. Even the most chaotic image has a casual elegance, but others seem almost too good to be true. One small early picture of a woman standing in a grove of flowering trees includes a sky so blue and clouds so painterly they look like they were painted in by Pierre et Gilles. And his photo of an older couple reading in a quiet glade—her in a beach chair, him reclining in a bathing suit—is the perfect urban pastoral.