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    QUIZ

    Ezra Stoller

    by Michael J. Crosbie

    Many of the finest examples of Modern architecture from the late 1940s to the late 1970s were "made" by a master — not necessarily the architect, but the man who captured the essence of Modern architecture through the lens of his large-format camera: Ezra Stoller.

    Most of us "know" a building from its photographs — it's only after we see the iconic images that we venture to see the real thing. But the images shape our expectations of and our prejudices and passion for the architectural work. We might even try to snap it in the same way as a master photographer such as Stoller.

    And for those great works of architecture that we have yet to visit in person, or that have been lost to time, the iconic image is all we have.

    Architectural photography was a different kind of art and craft when Stoller practiced it in the mid-20th century than it is now. Stoller was known for his exacting control, his tireless study of a building in different kinds of weather and throughout the course of a day, making notes on floor plans of the best vantage points, before he set up his camera and took the lens cap off.

    Only after all the possibilities were weighed, tested, and considered would the film be exposed. Digital technology, including Photoshop, has made it less crucial to get a shot just right on site.

    A recent exhibit of 50 of Ezra Stoller's gelatin silver prints at the Yossi Milo Gallery in New York City captures the photographer at the height of his powers, during the 1950s and '60s, which corresponded with the apogee of Modernism in America.   >>>

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    ArchWeek Image

    TWA Terminal at Idlewild (now JFK) Airport, Eero Saarinen, New York, NY
    (1962) by Ezra Stoller. A high-contrast photo of Eero Saarinen's TWA Terminal interior, showing stairs, concourse, and mezzanine.

    Photo: © Ezra Stoller/ Courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery, New York Extra Large Image

    ArchWeek Image

    TWA Terminal at Idlewild (now JFK) Airport, Eero Saarinen, New York, NY
    (1962) by Ezra Stoller. Swirling concrete shapes of Saarinen's TWA Terminal .

    Photo: © Ezra Stoller/ Courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery, New York Extra Large Image

     

    Click on thumbnail images
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