The Atomic Explosion

June 9 – September 2, 2011
at Peter Blum SoHo

Goings On About Town: Art: The Atomic Explosion: A Collection of Vintage Photographs

The New Yorker

At first glance, these sixty-six photographs of atomic blasts may suggest some savvy young artist’s conceptual project. But they’re actually the faded relics of the early atomic age—pictures taken in the nineteen-forties and fifties, many still bearing the bland captions of the news agencies that first distributed them. Although there are two photographs of the mushroom cloud at Nagasaki, most are of subsequent bomb tests in the Nevada desert and in the South Pacific, flat landscapes that erupt into balls of flame and towering stacks of smoke. Authenticity adds to the pictures’ dangerous allure, but, for every gorgeous abstraction, the facts insure that you’ll feel a nasty kick in the gut.

Through July 29