Lawrence Beck
American, born 1962

The contrasts and complementary juxtapositions between the domesticated and the wild are the primary focus of Lawrence Beck’s landscape photographs. Beck’s “Italian Gardens” series documents the gardens, fountains, and statues of Italian country estates, most notably those by Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio. Favoring soft light and cinematic, frontal symmetries, Beck’s scenes appear natural yet are entirely man-made, the gardens carefully manicured according to Renaissance ideals. Influenced by color field paintings and 17th century Dutch still lifes, Beck views the natural world through a sociological lens, using manicured lawns as a vehicle through which to explore the rigid construction of their settings, seeking beauty in the paradox of the cultivated natural world. His “Thickets” series similarly addresses the underlying geometries of bare branches and mounds of vines, …

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