PRINT April 2010


FOR SOME LUCKY PHOTOGRAPHS, there’s an interval between disfavor and disposal—a hiatus that offers a second chance at life. In our disembodied age, this purgatory is usually the wilds of eBay, although prints and reproductions also linger on in actual flea markets, antiquarian bookstores, and thrift shops. Few photographs, however, are discarded and restored more than once—unless they happen to be swept up in the vicissitudes of John Stezaker’s forty-year career. Some of the pictures the artist has used have inhabited this liminal state multiple times, their drift and resurgence tracing an extraordinary path amid our circulatory system of images.

In the past few years, a number of Stezaker’s large-scale paintings and silk screens on canvas have been slowly exhumed from storage (where they’d sat, virtually untouched, for upward of two decades) and have begun to appear both in exhibitions

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