Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Beer Stein and Dureau Photogarphs, New Orleans 10/2005
Still Life with Nuts and Photographs, Dureau Studio, New Orlaens 10/2005
Oval Mirror and Brushes, Dureau Studio, New Orleans 10/2005
Fruit and Sweet Still Life, Dureau Studio , New Orleans 10/2005
Dureau's Bed Canopy, New Orleans 10/2005

Broad Strokes*

Photo frustration

Crescent City art watchers will be especially frustrated by the new "Robert Mapplethorpe and the Classical Tradition" exhibit at New York's Guggenheim Museum.

Though Mapplethorpe showed little persistent penchant for classicism, New Orleans photographer George Dureau, whose career parallels Mapplethorpe's in many ways, was and is as dedicated to classical ideals as the Krewe of Comus.

Mapplethorpe visited Dureau's Big Easy studio in the late 1970s. Should the Guggenheim curators have been aware that a less-well-known photographer, way down in New Orleans, may have inspired whatever superficially classical leanings Mapplethorpe mustered? His New Orleans visits are certainly noted in his first biography "Mapplethorpe: Assault With a Deadly Camera" by Jack Fritscher, which features Dureau's portrait of Mapplethorpe on the cover. Couldn't they have mentioned Dureau, at least in passing, in the pages of blather that pad the exhibit catalog?

But let's be fair. Big-time curators can only know what they know, right?

No thank you.

* By Times-Picayune art critic Doug MacCash , Friday , July 29, 2005

George Dureau , a well known New Orleans artist, is another example of painter - photographers and although I have never been a huge fan of his work, I think credit should be given where it's deserved! I do beleive Dureau influenced Mapplethorpe, yet George is forgotten and Robert became the star!

I made these photographs in Dureau's home/studio , not long after Katrina. I think we were all still a bit shell shocked , but it was an amazing place to visit!

all reproduction rights reserved William Greiner


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