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Twenty-Five Years of Jose Picayo’s Polaroids

An exhibition featuring Polaroids by Jose Picayo is currently on view at the Robin Rice Gallery. Titled 25 Years of Polaroids, the show highlights Picayo’s most iconic work. Asked why film remains his preferred medium, the artist answered, “Digital is so overpoweringly real; photography is more magical to me.”

25 Years of Polaroids includes personal photographs Picayo made in Cuba in 1994 and Polaroid image transfers showcasing his eye for fashion. Also included are his Atget-esque tree portraits from a New Jersey public arboretum in 2012. Additionally, a selection of 8” x 10” Polaroids from Mugshots 2008, is on display, exploring how a person’s soul can be captured in what appear to be basic photographs. “The main questions at the heart of Picayo’s photography stem from the mystery of human perception and the precious things that are lost to time,” writes the gallery in a statement.

Images from the Rotating Doll series are featured as well. With this series Picayo examines time using the inanimate faces of broken dolls, reflecting on the objects we hold dear and how they fall apart as we try to hold on to them.

Born in Cuba, Picayo immigrated to Puerto Rico during his childhood and settled New York City in the early 80s. After receiving his BFA from Parsons School of Design, Picayo began shooting commercially for magazines such as Vanity Fair, New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Rolling Stone, and Elle Décor. 25 Years of Polaroids is Picayo’s ninth solo exhibition at the Robin Rice Gallery.

25 Years of Polaroids
By Jose Picayo
Robin Rice Gallery
Through January 6, 2019

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