Brian Ulrich – Dark Stores

“Dark Stores” a selection of photographs from the “Copia” series by Brian Ulrich is on display at the Robert Koch Gallery in San Francisco.

Brian Ulrich - Circuit City - 2008
Brian Ulrich, Circuit City, photograph, 2008.

The subjects of Ulrich’s photographs are vestiges of the commercial downturn. Wreckage like this is now becoming common in the suburban landscape. These vast hulks were the shells of promise for the American dream. Now, be it slow sales or an accident for the insurance company to handle, they are ghost towns and the artist is exploring and documenting the detritus.

Brian Ulrich - JC Penney - Dixie Square Mall - 2009
Brian Ulrich, JC Penney, Dixie Square Mall, photograph, 2009.

The once thriving, now empty spaces allow the viewer to indulge in nostalgic sentiment or imagine creative repurposing. Interpretation is completely subjective in this work. One may feel a sense of loss while another appreciates a path that no longer supports generic experience.

Brian Ulrich - Kids 'R Us - 2008
Brian Ulrich, Kids ‘R Us, photograph, 2008.

In a brilliant move, the gallery is showing photographs of ruins from the mid 1800’s by the French explorer Claude-Joseph Désiré Charnay. It’s a bold statement that disarms with a straightforward look at the cyclic nature of human culture.

Claude-Joseph Désiré Charnay - Uxmal: Egyptian facade of the Nun's Palace, from Cities et Ruines Americaines (pl. 38) - ca. 1850s
Claude-Joseph Désiré Charnay, Uxmal: Egyptian facade of the Nun’s Palace, from Cities et Ruines Americaines (pl. 38), albumen silver print from glass negative, mounted on card, ca. 1850s.

Brian Ulrich
Dark Stores
10 September – 31 October 2009
Robert Koch Gallery
San Francisco

Filed under:   Magazine

About Scott Lickstein, Look Into My Owl

Scott Lickstein is a visual artist and was the founder / primary writer for the art news source, until January 2013 when it merged with NOWhere Limited’s Magazine.

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