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Ethan Pines - Urban Archaeology Press

Press Representation for Ethan Pines' Debut Solo Show "Urban Archaeology"

In the early 1970's, Reyner Banham dissected Los Angeles according to four ecologies, from the affluent hillside suburbs to what was then the bohemian beachfront haven of Venice. He proposed the idea of Los Angeles as something more than simply an unintelligible sprawl by giving a passionate case for why L.A. truly ranks amongst the world's great cities. Though the character of the city has changed greatly since the ‘70s, particular elements of Los Angeles continue to define its composition, from the freeways, single family homes and countless automobiles—each an atomic unit of this ever-changing kinetic sprawl.

Photographer Ethan Pines was raised in Los Angeles and currently lives in Venice. His award-winning editorial and commercial work has been featured in Wired, Los Angeles Magazine, The New York Times, Food & Wine, Sony Music and Dolby Laboratories. Over the last few years he has also documented the city in terms of private moments separated from the greater agglomeration. Shooting in medium and large analog formats, he has captured almost alien portraits of trees, homes, rusting cars and freeway overpasses, which further highlight the city’s eccentricity and celebrate the peculiarity of forms borne of L.A.'s unique urban typologies. His technique combines a visually reductionist aesthetic that, in the example of his Night Trees series, reduces trees and homes to simple geometric shapes. Yet, simultaneously, his lens thematically expands upon the significance of otherwise mundane objects, such as mid-century homes that might normally be observed as a passing blur in one’s rear view mirror. Already his Night Trees series has been distinguished in the 2011 Communication Arts Photography Annual competition.

On February 2, NEW THEME Gallery is proud to present Ethan Pines’ first solo exhibition, Urban Archaeology, from 7PM to 10PM. The exhibition itself forms a collaboration between the photogra- pher and NEW THEME Architecture, as Pines has thoroughly documented NEW THEME’s ambitious design and construction of the Hollywood Hills residence of producer Robert Green and photographer Jill Greenberg. Through Pines’ photography, the exhibition seeks to expose the unique urban syntax of Los Angeles, and use that as a base to propose an idea of a future Southern Californian architecture that merges form with a durable, holistic ideal of sustainability.