Jeff Wall




White Cube presents an exhibition of works by Jeff Wall at Mason’s Yard. Comprising both new and earlier photographs spanning a twenty-year period, the selection foregrounds Wall’s attention to the forms and methods of picture-making and his prolonged observation of everyday life.

Since the 1980s, Wall has made documentary photographs alongside what he terms ‘cinematographic’ pictures, all of which emerge from similar processes of study and reflection. Trap Set (2021) was taken during mink season on a cold February day in the suburbs of Wall’s native Vancouver. Animal traps, one of mankind’s oldest devices, remind us of our original cunning intelligence. The equally cleverly designed Playground Structure (2008) depicts another contraption waiting for its users, in this case, children at play, possibly those living in the suburban houses in the background.

Like Trap Set, Pawnshop (2009) reflects the ‘near-documentary’ approach that has been a central aspect of Wall’s work for forty years. The cubicles of the pawn shop’s interior, which resemble confession booths or changing rooms, not only provide isolation and privacy but also perhaps reflect the almost ritualistic function of this emporium where people can borrow against the value of even small items of personal property, often as a last resort.

The exhibition includes several black and white prints, including Cold Storage (2007) and Burrow (2004). A new picture, A woman with a necklace (2021) shows a woman reclining languidly in a shadowy interior examining a sparkling glass necklace. Derived from Wall’s own memories of his childhood home, this study in light and shadow, like all of Wall’s black and white pictures, draws attention to the possibilities of picture making without colour, and to the intense luminosity that the monochrome offers.

Wall has said that his photographs encourage the viewer to write a text that he has erased in the process of making the image, that the viewer creates whatever narrative dimension the pictures have.

Duration 27 April 2022 - 25 June 2022
Times Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 6pm
Cost Free
Venue White Cube - Mason's Yard
Address 25-26 Mason's Yard (Off Duke Street), London, SW1Y 6BU
Contact 2079305373 / enquiries@whitecube.com / www.whitecube.com

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