Alex Prager’s surreal photography exposes the melodrama of Americana
Enter a very Hitchcockian Hollywood.
American photographer and filmmaker Alex Prager captures the surrealism of America like none other: from Hitchcockian sets to Stepford Wives vibes, her creations evoke never-ending narratives. Born into the wild world of 1979 Los Angeles, Prager’s works cross the worlds of art, fashion, photography and film, exposing their melodrama by encapsulating them with an eerie hyperrealism. Referencing the aesthetics of noir cinema and hallucinatory old Hollywood, the photographer’s carefully staged scenes and sharply styled create a dramatic intensity worthy of the silver screen. Often depicting “spaces where people find themselves, sometimes unwillingly, in close proximity to others: streets, beaches, airport lounges, theatres”, the work pushes the viewer to become a voyeur of her subjects.
Celebrating her mid-career moment this summer is The Photographer’s Gallery, who’s major new exhibition features over 40 of Prager’s works from the trademark large-scale Technicolour to her complete film projects. Entitled Silver Lake Drive, the comprehensive presents the power of femininity in her photographic and filmic oeuvre: from women-led narratives on screen to the female figures centre stage in her set creations. Often shot in extreme close-up, women are captured with “exaggerated emotion [wearing] highly styled and codified clothes and sport elaborate, improbable hairstyles”, exemplifying and satirising America’s obsession with hypersexuality and hyperfemininity.
Take a look at some of our favourite picks from the exhibition below…
Alex Prager: Silver Lake Drive runs from 15th June until the 14th October 2018 at The Photographer’s Gallery, London, W1F 7LW. For more information click here.