New York

Jan Groover

Robert Miller Gallery

At a time when many photographers are primarily concerned with subject matter, Jan Groover’s insistence upon the centrality of the formal, visual aspect of the medium is salutary. As she remarked in a handout accompanying this show, “It is the forms and the attitudes and the space of things which make meaning for me.” Nevertheless, in the work presented here, Groover edges increasingly toward the theatrical, presenting tense arrangements of objects that are associatively as well as formally evocative within a shallow, stagelike space. The backgrounds are painted in muted pastels and carefully lit in order to heighten the sense of drama, of incipient action. We wait for the actors to come on stage; or perhaps the objects themselves will start to act and to speak.

The implicit narratives in these pictures do not necessarily contradict Groover’s formalist stance. Groover’s work has always

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