FotoFest Exhibitions

Greg Stimac


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Click to enlarge and for more images

Click to enlarge and for more images


Greg Stimac began his exploration of recreational gun use during the summer of 2004 when he made repeated trips to unregulated rifle ranges in Missouri and California. Armed with a medium-format camera and a (thankfully) long cable release, Stimac would take a picture as his subjects opened fire. Sometimes catching the blur of bullets leaving the barrel or a momentary burst of light and smoke, Stimac’s Recoil (2006) pictures are remarkable for the relationships implied or suggested among the people in the frame. The shooters’ responses range from intense to casual, while their companions demonstrate anything from total absorption through mild curiosity to completely indifferent boredom.

Mowing the Lawn Portfolio

Influenced by such work as Hilla and Bernd Becher’s serial typography of disappearing industrial sites, Conceptual artist Greg Stimac set out to create a photographic series showing people throughout the United States mowing their lawns. From Midwestern suburbs to towns in Florida and Texas, Stimac traveled with his camera listening for the sound of mowers. The people in his photographs are a true cross section of U.S. culture, and the lawns themselves vary dramatically, from weed-ridden plots and brown patches of dry grass to verdant lawns surrounding pristine homes. Through its deliberate formal repetition, the series draws attention to the mundane labor required to maintain a lawn while at the same time addressing the ritualistic aspects of the effort. In the end, the scope and variety of Stimac’s survey underscore the predominance of the lawn as a social landscape.

Untitled (White Mustangs)

Greg Stimac individually filmed three white Mustangs for both their iconic muscle car status and the idea (suggested by their name) of three white heroic horses. In each of the three-channel synchronized video projections, the car horn was held down and recorded until each burned out and died. The three horns start out sounding the same, then slowly each becomes individual and distinct, fading and dying at different rates. As aggressive and annoying as car horns can be, in this triptych the noise is quickly transformed and reduced to a meditative and lamenting chorus until the last garbled mutter.

Greg Stimac explores the American ideologies found in mowing suburban lawns, campfires, snowmen, roadside memorials erected after automobile accidents, discarded urine-filled plastic bottles, and gunplay at unregulated outdoor firing ranges spread throughout the United States. Stimac’s photographic series, Recoil, is comprised of images of recreational sport shooters at ranges found in Missouri and California firing their weapons toward the viewer. Photographing gun flash, gun smoke, and shell ejection approaches America’s love of and identity with firearms. In 2005, Stimac received his B.F.A. in photography from Columbia College, Chicago, and was awarded an Albert P. Weisman Memorial Fellowship. His photographs have been shown at Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago; and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Stimac was born in Euclid, Ohio in 1976. He currently lives and works in Chicago.