The Craig Krull Gallery in Santa Monica is presenting its fourth solo exhibition of the work of photographer Robert Weingarten, Portraits Without People, through June 11.

A reception for the artist is scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday, May 14 at the gallery, 2525 Michigan Ave. B3, Santa Monica.

In Portraits Without People, Weingarten poses the question, “Can you express a person’s being and character photographically without showing them?”

He began working on his own portrait by compositing images of objects and places of personal significance; his violin, his childhood home, a calculator, and other items.

“Weingarten adds to the tradition (of photocollage) by moving beyond the instant of the photographic moment to conjure a more synthetic, impressionistic kind of picture that blurs the boundaries between fact and fantasy,” said Julian Cox, curator of Weingarten’s exhibition of this work at The High Museum in Atlanta.

In order to create a resonant series of these “portraits without people,” Weingarten recognized that his subjects should be prominent individuals of high accomplishment and general public recognition. He sought out icons of society such as Stephen Sondheim, Frank Gehry, and Joyce Carol Oates, asking them for a list of 10 objects and places that define who they are. Weingarten made photographs of the items on each list, then created the individual portraits by layering his images digitally.

Concurrently, the gallery will present an exhibition of portraits by Richard C. Miller, created from the 1940s through 1960s in Southern California.

The exhibition at Craig Krull Gallery will feature a selection of carbro prints from the 40s, including a very early image of Norma Jean Dougherty (Marilyn Monroe) on the beach. In addition, the exhibit will include a number of vintage prints of film luminaries photographed unconventionally, sometimes in extreme close-up, such as in his image of Stanley Kubrick with one eye closed, and the other glaring and direct.

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