Cloth $60.00 ISBN: 9781935195436 Published August 2013

Stray Light

David Hartt

David Hartt

Distributed for Columbia College Chicago Press

112 pages | 40 color plates | 9 x 10 1/2
Cloth $60.00 ISBN: 9781935195436 Published August 2013
When the Johnson Publishing Company, best known for Jet and Ebony, moved into its iconic building on Michigan Avenue, the structure symbolized a bold entry into both the Chicago skyline and the city’s cultural environment. This emblematic building was the first in Chicago designed and owned by African Americans, a modernist masterpiece that in 1980 theWashington Post called, “practically a monument—sometimes an ostentatious one—to black success.”

David Hartt was given unprecedented access to the building, much of which retains its ’70s design, from bright gold accents to vintage see-through furniture. His resulting photographs take viewers on a rich and revealing tour. They capture the distinct physical characteristics while also illuminating the power structures and ideological purposes they once represented. Hartt’s collection also serves as an unexpected final documentation. Not long after Hartt captured these images, the Johnson Publishing Company announced it was selling its building and moving north. Stray Light is a time capsule of a historic building that once symbolized a bright future. 
Pittsburgh City Paper
Stray Light is not simply a portrait. Hartt presents the building's interiors with a moving and reverent eye, and a sense of awe, nostalgia and wonder.”
Art in America
"The term 'stray light' refers to unwanted illumination disturbing an optical system—a glare that troubles the image. In its poker-faced depiction of manic luxury and the machinations behind it, Stray Light recalls Frederick Wiseman's 1983 documentary The Store, which considered the sartorial delicacies offered in a Neiman-Marcus in Dallas. Both Wiseman and Hartt are almost excruciatingly adept at keeping implicit or explicit critique of their subject matter out of their work. Hartt's elegantly magnetic images suggest his desire to allow viewers to make their own conclusion."
Contents

Michael Darling: Points of Light

Stray Light

David Hartt in conversation with Darby English: The Windmill is Not the Giant

Photographs

For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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