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Stages: Part 4

Here’s the penultimate post in our Stages coverage. The variety of work continues with our concentration turning to two photographers, Catherine Opie and Andreas Gursky, as well as illustration icon Raymond Pettibon and artist Eric White.

Catherine Opie is a photographer who’s click of the shutter has the ability to capture a mood as tangible as if you were there with her. Known for her ongoing portraits of particular groups, and most recently her study of American football players, she left the figurative approach behind with her piece for Stages but the outcome lacks none of the emotion you’d expect. A simple open road with two kinked yellow lines dissecting the tarmac couldn’t reference Lance’s foundation and struggle more aptly.

Moving on to the other photographic contribution to the show, we stumble across Andreas Gursky. If you’re ever lucky enough to see one of Gursky’s pieses in person you’ll be won over. A staggering amount of detail and a well-honed compositional eye rarely fail to tick the right boxes. A special re-print of Tour de France I from 2006 sits within his signature style, presenting the viewer with an almost unbelievable amount of information all at once, as well as providing a fitting tribute to Armstrong’s comeback year.

One household name after another sees Raymond Pettibon wield his elegant, expressive hand to create No Title (from the ends). As suggestive and passionate as the rest of the work that it’s accompanied by see it bed into the show beautifully.

And speaking of beautifully rendered pieces, we walk back into the front room to be greeted by Eric White’s concentrated piece, Foyer. His undoubted technical talent is twinned with inspiration gleamed from the experience of his mother’s victory over oral cancer, Foyer acting as a tribute to her will and the work she has since done to support the cause.