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Performance  |  Film, Photographs and Live Guitar Compositions by Ralph Gibson

Part of M&T Second Fridays at the Burchfield Penney

Friday, January 11, 2013, 8–10 pm

Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Auditorium  

For photos from the event courtesy of Brendan Bannon, visit the Burchfield Penney's Tumblr page.


 " I have always been amazed by the way Spain used a simple, beautiful line to evoke such enormous dimension. He gave us a lot . Thanks, Spain....."

Ralph Gibson, NYC


This performance is part of Testify and is presented in collaboration with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.

Ralph Gibson is that rare artist for our times who has touched the masters of the past half century – from the Beat Generation in San Francisco to the vigor of yesterday’s born-digital, cross-media creations. Gibson is a photographer and an independent publisher, whose Lustrum Press brought out such as Robert Frank and Larry Clark, and whose own images are featured in the national museums of America, France, Korea, Canada, China, Australia, Germany, and others, and the finest beside them – the Met, MOMA, Getty, Guggenheim, Whitney, Eastman House, Louvre, Tate, Prado, and so many others. Publishers have created more than 30 books, curators made hundreds of exhibitions, and now concert halls are featuring his sound-image moving picture performances. Cities, universities, corporations, nations and endowments have proffered their top awards. A provocative thinker and speaker, his writing commands attention, as does his teaching, in workshops and seminars around the world.

A performance piece incorporating film, photographs and live guitar composition, 20 minutes duration. Ich Bin die Nacht (I am the Night) was presented at the Apple Store, Soho, and The Monkey, New York City, January 2008 in conjunction with The New York Guitar Festival. Music for Lens and Guitar, produced by Buffalo Attorney Steve Foley, is an ongoing series of works pursuing the relationship between photography and music.

Photographer Ralph Gibson has been a master of dramatic understatement. His high-contrast pictures - usually focusing on one geometric element (the corner of a room) or a single human gesture (the curve of a hand) - form a kind of dream-narrative when gathered together. Or, as Gibson, one of the master artists of our time, puts it: “I embrace the abstract in photography and exist on a few bits of order extracted from the chaos of reality.” His work is collected by major museums around the world, has been exhibited internationally and published frequently since the late 1950s.

Gibson has two passions, music and photography. He began teaching himself classical guitar while serving as a naval photographer. Practicing in the ship’s darkroom while others thought he was developing film. He is quick to state, “music is my addiction, photography is my crutch.”

Gibson combines these two disciplines to create a multi-media performance of videos created from his photography and performs his musical compositions in front of them.

Buy tickets online or call 716-878-6011 during gallery hours.