Gregory Crewdson Essay

It’s a quality Crewdson believes may have been inspired by his father, a psychoanalyst who worked out of the family’s basement.

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But at the same time, I was taking classes with film theorist Tom Gunning, who was hugely influential to me.I knew that it would be all interiors and landscapes on location, in nature one way or another.” On the morning of the exhibition’s opening last week, I spoke with Crewdson about his influences and the sense of mystery at the heart of his work. Can you tell me about your relationship to the medium?I’ve always loved movies, and I loved the way movies looked—light on a screen.What I find fascinating about your photos is that they create a psychological space that allows viewers to create their own narrative.Two people can look at the same photo but tell themselves a completely different story.Photographs are limited, they’re not like movies or literature because there’s no before or after.But I’ve always seen that restriction as a positive, as a way of trying to create even more mystery.I started taking classes on Hitchcock, 1950s melodrama, horror films, et cetera, and for sure that had such a profound effect on me.I saw David Lynch’s Blue Velvet when I was a graduate student at Yale and that definitely changed my life.Yes, and to me it’s beautiful that that can happen.Everyone brings their own history, their own baggage, and their own particular meaning to a picture.

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