Chuck Ramirez: Metaphorical Portraits Online Conversation
Patricia Ruiz-Healy, of Ruiz-Healy Art, and art collector Cynthia Toles discuss the work of Chuck Ramirez. Moderated by Catherine Anspon, executive editor of PaperCity Magazine.
Ramirez’s photographic subjects are often “low” or common objects that are recast in high-culture style. Shot from overhead the objects are isolated at the center of a white, shadowless ground, a format he continued to use throughout his career. Ramirez’s compositional formats are either structure- or texture-based. This presentation is of his structure series. In the Purse Portraits (2005), friends’ handbags are depicted as more or less structured containers on a pristine background. The same applies to the Lost and Found Series (2008) of imaginary travelers’ suitcases; and the 2000 Quarantine Series of almost discarded hospital flower arrangements. Regardless of subject, Ramirez’s images are devoid of human inhabitants, yet filled with humanity.
November 7th marks the 10th anniversary of Chuck’s passing and his work is as relevant as when he produced it. Ramirez investigated objects of everyday life, and his photographs are charged with metaphors of identity, gender, desire, and consumption. Ramirez’s work is characterized by restraint in style and subject.