Gibson, Ralph - The spirit of Burgundy
Ralph Gibson has carried on a lifelong love affair with France, passionately observing and recording the country's character through its most intimate details. Now, in The Spirit of Burgundy, the photographer gives us his unforgettable chronicle of a year in one of France's most culturally rich and visually stunning regions. A woman's profile, fleetingly glimpsed; the rugged tapestry of vineyards and the chance combination of colors at a Dijon festival; gleaming necklaces and the heel of a shoe; the shape of a wine bottle and the sensuous pattern of lace curtains - the images in The Spirit of Burgundy capture the essence of their setting. In 86 color and 68 black-and-white duotone photographs, Gibson celebrates Burgundy. Local cuisine, architecture, customs, wine cultivation, landscape, and the Burgundians themselves are ongoing visual themes that produce a witty portrait: sensual but never sentimental, both stark and lush, earthy and enigmatic.
Capturing a wide range of subjects in portraits and landscapes, prolific photographer Ralph Gibson is acclaimed for his bold imagery and technical prowess. Gibson manipulates the camera’s focus to hone in on certain areas of his compositions, as in Wheat Field, Burgundy (1993), where shallow depth of field directs the viewer’s gaze onto striking red flowers and delicate stalks of wheat in the near ground. In Gibson’s high contrast black and white works, shadows often play a dynamic and even focal role.