The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

The field of architectural photography is often slick and staged, overproduced and unrealistic. But not the work of photographer Grant Mudford, who trains his lenses on the uncelebrated, forgotten details of architecture—like half-finished construction sites, still wearing scaffolding.

Mudford is the recipient of the annual Excellence in Photography Award from the Julius Shulman Institute at Woodbury University, which honors a mid-career architectural photographer. An exhibition, which closes this weekend, features Mudford's elegantly composed, almost abstract photographs of industrial structures.

"Grant Mudford deconstructs the elemental components of architecture, transforming the rebar, concrete and stucco of ordinary building sites into poignant statements about frailty and strength," says curator Michael Duncan.

The resulting images are gloriously raw and almost witty—imbuing a bit of personality on what are usually cold, stark monuments. The show is up in Woodbury's Hollywood Boulevard gallery until Sunday, April 27. [WUHO]


Sydney (Opera House), 1977

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Silver gelatin print, 22 x 28 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


Oklahoma, 1975

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Silver gelatin print, 28 x 22 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


CSR Series Port Waratah, Graded Coal Pile, 1981

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Silver gelatin print, framed 29 x 33 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


Walt Disney Concert Hall, Under Construction #4, Frank Gehry, Architect, 2002

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Chromogenic print mounted on Cintra, 60 x 48 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


CSR Series, Port Waratah, From Conveyor Tower, 1981

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Silver gelatin print, 29 x 33 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


CSR Series, BBC Mine No. 2, Conveyor Towers, 1981

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Silver gelatin print, 33 x 29 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery


Contemporary Art Center Cincinnati, Under Construction, 2002

The Hidden Beauty of Unfinished Buildings

Chromogenic print mounted on Sintra, framed 48 x 60 1/2 in. Courtesy Rosamund Felsen Gallery