Lauren Grabelle: Photographer X

Invisibility gives power. Not only are you allowed into the hidden and private but - with a camera at hand - you can capture it. In the late 1990’s Lauren Grabelle slipped anonymously into a job in the surveillance department at one of the largest casinos in the world and, while surveilling people, printed frames seen from CCTV monitors. However, the frames do not seem to be mere “print screens” - one sees the photographer’s eye (or rather fingertips) managing (or at least selecting) the reality from high above: zooming in and out, cropping, framing, capturing extra layers of gambling reality. Fantastic insects, odd spots and aberration of cameras doubled with the original CCTV frame low quality add to a rather abstract and even surreal character of the images, even though most of them hold exact information about
date and time.

About the series:
Medium: infused ink on metal printed digitally from scans of original thermal paper prints direct from CCTV video feeds.
In the late 1990’s I slipped anonymously into a job in the surveillance department at one of the largest casinos in the world. There I found myself with over 800 cameras at my fingertips, and at the push of a button, the option to print a frame seen on the monitor before me while searching remotely for human indiscretions. I became Photographer X.

About Lauren Grabelle:
Originally from NJ, I moved to Montana to heal the wounds that are created by living in the most densely populated state and being so isolated from nature. My photography falls in the matrix where fine art and documentary meet, where I can tell truths about our relationships to other people, animals, nature, and ourselves. My work is about empathy.

My work has been exhibited at Blue Sky Gallery, Newspace Center for Photography, and Black Box Gallery in Portland; Arthill Gallery in London; Photoville and powerHouse Arena in NYC; Gulf Photo Plus in Dubai UAE, Trieste Photo Days festival in Italy; Colorado Photographic Art Center in Denver; Candela Gallery in VA; Atlanta Celebrates Photography at the B Complex Gallery; Yellowstone Art Museum, Missoula Art Museum, and the Montana Triennial 2012 & 2018. Publications include The New York Times, Harper's, High Country News, the Virginia Quarterly Review, and Photographer’s Companion (China).


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