Ralph Gibson (American, b. 1939), Open Book, Top Hat, 1974. Gelatin Silver Print, 8 1/8 x 12 7/16 in. Gift of Dr. Kristaps J. Keggi, 1983.61.11
Dragging us into the scene of representation, a blank book held open against the horizon becomes a surface for projection. The tension between our close proximity to another body and the vast seascape beyond it, between intimacy and the abstraction it produces, unsettles even as it beckons us. Not a representation that would anchor or fix the subject, the fluid drag of the photograph casts the body loose in a sea of possibilities.