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Alex Prager, Crowd #7 (Bob Hope Airport), 2013, ink-jet print, 59 1/2 x 79".

Alex Prager

Lehmann Maupin

Alex Prager, Crowd #7 (Bob Hope Airport), 2013, ink-jet print, 59 1/2 x 79".

Alex Prager’s recent photographic works depict crowds on streets, on a beach, and at the airport, among other locations where humans find themselves in close proximity to other humans, sometimes unwillingly. In fact, the photographs were all shot on sets in Los Angeles, carefully staged to produce an elaborately cinematic atmosphere heightened by costumes, makeup, lighting, and a saturated palette that renders the works intense and alluring. They are scaled large enough to immerse or even overwhelm the viewer and were mostly shot from above, some from almost directly overhead, suggesting the vantage point of some omniscient presence. As viewers, we find ourselves at once swallowed by the crowd and hovering above it.

Most of the works portray in-between-ness, a nonspace through which we are obliged to pass. In Crowd # 7 (Bob Hope Airport) (all works 2013), the figures are set against

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