Perhaps the most succinct representation of this overarching theme is Andreas Gursky’s F1 Boxenstopp III, 2007 (above). In his typically mesmerizing, minutely detailed digital photography, Gursky’s depiction of F1 racing teams eloquently reminds us that time can mean different things for different people, and can seem to move at different speeds. To the people diligently working in this photograph, frozen mid-action, every millisecond counts, while for the rest of us, this segment of time will likely pass unnoticed.
Photographer Sharon Lockhart connects us to a way we universally experience time: through aging. In her Pine Flat Portrait Studio series, Lockhart has created a poignant reminder of the fleeting nature of youth. Her portraits of children taken on their own terms are simple, yet searingly honest, evoking a nostalgia for youth without sugar-coating it.
Ed Ruscha’s massive diptych Azteca / Azteca in Decline, 2007, shows just how well an abstract work can embody this theme. Utilizing the before and after format tabloid media has accustomed us to, this set of 27-foot long recreations of a mural the artist saw in Mexico City appears to crumple and fade before our eyes. A victim of the passage of time, the second image seems almost defeated.