VIEW FIN­DER: PHO­TOG­RA­PHER WIL­LIAM COUPON

Pasatiempo - - MIXED MEDIA -

Dutch artists such as Hans Hol­bein and Rem­brandt van Rijn used warm pal­ettes and in­di­rect light in their in­ti­mate por­traits of no­bil­ity and com­mon­ers alike. In­spired by the aes­thet­ics in such works of clas­si­cal art, pho­tog­ra­pher Wil­liam Coupon’s stu­dio por­traits, shot against painted back­drops and lit by a sin­gle source, present an up close and per­sonal view of his sub­jects.

A documentary pho­tog­ra­pher, Coupon, whose ex­hi­bi­tion Por­traits con­tin­ues at Photo-eye Book­store and Pro­ject Space through Jan. 5, 2019, has been shoot­ing ethno­graphic sub­jects and no­table cul­tural icons for more than 40 years. Coupon’s sub­jects in­clude the Quechua peo­ple of Bo­livia, Haitians, Aus­tralian Abo­rig­ines, Moroc­can Ber­bers, and New Guinea tribes­men, as well as fig­ures in the arts, ath­let­ics, pol­i­tics, and other spheres. He’s shot por­traits of artists Keith Har­ing and Jean-Michel Basquiat, and mu­si­cians Miles Davis, Ge­orge Har­ri­son, and Neil Young. “I was al­ways in­spired by travel, by cul­ture, by faces — for some rea­son, I have been drawn to for­mal por­traits and their re­la­tion­ship to paint­ing,” the Santa Fe-based pho­tog­ra­pher said. Coupon’s work has ap­peared in nu­mer­ous mag­a­zines, in­clud­ing Time,

Newsweek, and Rolling Stone. He pho­tographed tribal lead­ers from around the world at the 1992 Earth Sum­mit in Rio de Janeiro and has ex­hib­ited in­ter­na­tion­ally. He signs copies of his new mono­graph Wil­liam Coupon:

Por­traits, pub­lished by Dami­ani in 2018, on Satur­day, Dec. 8, at 5 p.m. dur­ing a re­cep­tion. For in­for­ma­tion, call Photo-eye Book­store (300 Ru­fina Cir­cle, Suite A3) at 505-988-5152.

In ad­di­tion, on Dec. 14, Peters Projects (1011 Paseo de Per­alta, 505-954-5800) opens Wil­liam Coupon: Mu­sic Speak, an ex­hi­bi­tion of Coupon’s por­traits of jazz mu­si­cians. The re­cep­tion is at 5 p.m.

— Michael Abatemarco

Wil­liam Coupon: Aus­tralian Abo­rig­i­nal Boy, Utopia Sta­tion, Aus­tralia, 1980, gelatin sil­ver print

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