Garry Winogrand: All Things are Photographable
“Nowadays, people wish they could wear a pair of glasses that photoshop the world; they hate themselves, they control all their pictures. Garry’s pictures, instead, celebrate the un-staged, the un-perfected.”
With such words, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner pays tribute to the protagonist of Freyer’s artist’s portrait. From the late fifties to the early eighties, photo-poet Garry Winogrand drew an encyclopaedic portrait of America with all its pathos and conflicts. The snapshot-aesthetics of his “street photography”, though initially lampooned, has since turned into a universal visual language in the field of documentary.
In order to come closer to the early deceased photographer, Freyer uses - apart from photos, private Super 8 material, and a fine contingent of companions and art historians - unpublished audio recordings of lectures. In particular the latter show the obsessive flaneur as an instinctive and deep thinker. Yet, in his proletarian accent his rough childhood on the streets of the Bronx always remains present.
From the 1970s on, Winogrand’s rise and fall was clouded by accusations of sexism. Freyer illuminates the photographer’s dark side from a wider feminist perspective; in his balancing act between macho artist and family man she spots the unresolved contradictions of American masculinity.
The later work of the manically photographing Winogrand consists of 10,000 (!) undeveloped film rolls. Thanks to Feyer’s multi-layered film, this - quite literally - unformatted heritage is made accessible for the first time.
Sasha Waters Freyer
Born in Brooklyn in 1968, Sasha Waters Freyer makes non-fiction films about outsiders, misfits and everyday radicals. Trained in photography and the documentary tradition, she fuses original and found footage in 16mm film and video. Past projects have screened at the Telluride Film Festival, the Film Society of Lincoln Center, the Rotterdam, Tribeca, Big Sky, Havana, Videoex, and Ann Arbor Film Festivals; IMAGES in Toronto, the National Museum for Women in the Arts, the Muse-um of Moving Image in New York, Union Docs, The Pacific Film Archive, L.A. Film Forum, and Rencontres Internationales Paris/Berlin, as well as the Sundance Channel and international cable and public television. She is Chair of the Department of Photography and Film at Virginia Commonwealth University, the No.1 public college of art in the U.S.