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The artist

Launching this collection were giant images by Kodak, in the hall of Grand Central Station in New York, which the firm used at the time to proclaim its photographic omnipotence. Used as advertising tools in the legendary Manhattan train station from 1950 to 1990, the plastered images were transparent and backlit, with exceptional dimensions spanning 18 metres wide by 6 metres high. This was a first in the world of photography. Through their spectacular, almost surrealistic stagings, these panoramas became communication tools in service to the promotion of the brand’s film and cameras. In true soap-opera style, for over 40 years Kodak Colorama Display staged the story of ideal families with exemplary lives, without contradiction or contestation. In other words, the very expression of the post-war American dream, in its most pleasant and universally adoptable form.  ... See more See less

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About the artwork

The images of the Colorama collection served above all the commercial promotion of the films and cameras of the Kodak firm. They are shown in every picture. However, through their aesthetic and ambition, these monumental formats surpassed the advertising norms and technological prowess of the era. These surrealist stagings refer to the common and classic theme of the passage of time, showcasing the main function of the camera: as a way of capturing and conserving the best moments of a life, whether it be birthdays, family gatherings, weddings, or holiday scenes. They tell the story of an ideal family and produce, in so doing, a deliberately patriotic and conservative discourse on 1950s and 1960s America. In this colourful promotion of the ?American Way of Life?, the counter-culture seems non-existent and everything appears perfectly flawless behind the dazzling colours and frozen smiles of cheerful characters. In this one, created by Bruce O. Nett in 1970, American landscapes and the pleasure-seeking society are magnified.

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Our key artists

THIBAUD POIRIER

Born to expatriate parents, Thibaud Poirier spent his childhood in many cities around the globe, but out of Houston, Montreal, Buenos Aires, and Tokyo, it was the latter that has influenced him the most: “I discovered architecture there, in particular by Tadao Ando, and it became...

FORMENTO+FORMENTO

Partners both in work and in life, BJ and Richeille Formento have collaborated since 2009. After studying fine arts at the Academy of Arts University in San Francisco, BJ began his career in New York after assisting major photographers such as Richard Avedon, Mary Ellen Mark, and...

ALFREDO SANCHEZ

Alfredo Sanchez was not predestined for photography. Born in Mexico in 1954, he studied law and took up a career in the private sector. “My free time was spent playing tennis, horse riding, and let’s not forget my favourite pastime: photography,” he says. Much later, towards the ...