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TIERNEY GEARON | ’Mohawk, New York’, ’Palm Springs’ and ‘Utah’
May 28th 2021
Photographing her children at play, as they discover of the world around them, Tierney Gearon’s debut is an honest documentary of family life as it is. The artist’s intuitive understanding of composition, colour, and natural light, presents her work as photographs that could have come from any family album. Images that would later in life become evident in her understanding of herself. The series, shot as the artist’s returned to the United States, instantly received great acclaim in the artworld and beyond. Four photographs from Mohawk, New York, Palm Springs, Utah - and one unknown location - give a look into Gearon’s break-through series that caused much debate.
by Henrik Riis
PRINT EDITION RELEASE
Little did the British mega-collector, Charles Saatchi, know that dark clouds would gather and release a forceful media-storm as he opened the doors to his new exhibition ‘I Am A Camera’ at Saatchi Gallery in January of 2001. At the centre of the controversy were works of two American artists from Saatchi’s impressive private collection: the photographer Nan Goldin, celebrated for her portraits of friends and lovers in the bohemian subcultures of New York City in the eighties - and the younger Tierney Gearon, a rising star on the art scene. Gearon, who recently returned from a journey of self-discovery in the United States with her two children aged seven and five, had caught the attention of Saatchi with her honest and innocent family documentary work. Some of those photographs with her children posing without clothes.

Including Gearon’s work in his first exhibition of the year, Saatchi had unintendedly poked a stick onto a hornet nest, releasing the fury and anger of London’s bourgeois housewives who had little else to do. With the British Crown Prosecution Service and the self-proclaimed guardians of morality on one side - and Saatchi on the other - the self-made media-mogul had them exactly where he wanted. The prospect of a legal fight played out in the media would on be on his turf, and ultimately come down to one question: censorship.
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Utah), 2001

50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
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TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Utah), 2001

50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
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Tierney Gearon (American, b. 1963)
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
Chromogenic print.

Signed, titled and numbered on verso.

Only 35 printed of the edition of 100.
PRICE
$ 715.00 Available from a private collection
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
The series of photographic works which caused such furore, came from a place far from the need to cause a stir - or one seeking fame and fortune. They were the first steps of an inner journey for Gearon to find herself. Her upbringing in America the sixties was unconventional with a father who had retired from property development in his thirties and gone poolside in the Caribbean, and a dysfunctional mother who believed that the United States government and aliens were conspiring to get her. It was two worlds; one part enjoying the privileged life of winter sun in St. Barts and summers in the Hamptons with her father - and another part, trying to keep her mother on a safe path, all while she tried to decipher the coloured circles and markings made by the utility company on the pavement in front of their house.

By the mid-nineties, Gearon thought she had found what she was looking for all her life: married and two young children, living a relaxed lifestyle in a posh neighbourhood in South Kensington, London. But however hard she tried, she never felt she fitted in. To fill the empty space, she reconnected to a previous passion of hers before she had reached London. Thoughtfully, Gearon started to photograph what was close to her. The area she lived in, the house and the children. Steadily affirming the people, whom she had met during her nomadic years as a model, complimenting her for her natural talent of catching a moment in perfect colour and lighting.
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Mohawk, New York, 1999), 2001

Edition of 100
40(w) x 50(h) cm
15.98(w) x 20.00(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
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TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Mohawk, New York, 1999), 2001

Edition of 100
40(w) x 50(h) cm
15.98(w) x 20.00(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
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Tierney Gearon (American, b. 1963)
40(w) x 50(h) cm
15.98(w) x 20.00(h) inches
Chromogenic print.

Signed, titled and numbered on verso.

Only 35 printed of the edition of 100.
Edition of 100
PRICE
$ 715.00 Available from a private collection
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
Shortly after, Gearon was back in America, leaving behind the unhappy life in London. What followed the next two years was an adventure across the United States, her and the children on a path of a new life, visiting relatives and friends. The hundreds of photographs shot in 1999 and 2000 tell a story of life with small children and their discovery of the world around them with little thought of conformity. Children enjoying themselves, the play and fantasy taking over, as in Untitled (Mohawk, New York) showing her son - dressed up as a clown with a lollipop in his mouth - in a make-believe world of his own. Until nature calls and the activities momentarily have to pause, as captured in Untitled (Utah); here, blissfully doing his business, ignorant that he is in the middle of a trailer park.

The happy family life of four in Untitled (Palm Springs) stands out from Gearon’s debut series, which mostly portrays the immediate family. In this photograph the harmony is almost complete. A yellow detached house in the background - perfectly matched to the fruits of the lemon trees and the lush garden - and a couple on the spacious lawn. The man sends a child flying high up in the air while the woman looks at their daring play - and at the front, Gearon’s daughter, just emerged from a dip in the pool, gazes straight at the lens, somewhat puzzled at her mother’s activity. The natural light and colour palette brings this work to almost perfection, giving viewers who grew up in the sixties and seventies - a time when the attitude to nudity was more relaxed - a strong sense of nostalgia.
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Palm Beach, 1999), 2001

Edition of 100
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
Your Offer *
Name *
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* Required fields
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled (Palm Beach, 1999), 2001

Edition of 100
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
Tierney Gearon (American, b. 1963)
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
Chromogenic print.

Signed, titled and numbered on verso.

Only 35 printed of the edition of 100.
Edition of 100
PRICE
$ 715.00 Available from a private collection
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
Gearon’s photographs could have come from any family album and don’t require a subtitle or text to be understood. When asked, she often mentions that the pictures do not have a meaning and there are no hidden messages that need to be extracted and analysed. They are minimal. Each work is a glimpse into the life of Gearon and her two children, showing a journal of family life that is as candid and innocent as can be.

Prominently featured in ‘I Am A Camera’ at Saatchi Gallery in January 2001, and a solo show at Gagosian Gallery in New York the same year, Tierney Gearon’s early days in the art world could not have been more spectacular. In the two decades following the debut, her works have been widely exhibited and included the acclaimed New York solo shows: ‘The Mother Project’ (2006) at Yossi Milo and ‘Explosure’ (2009) at Phillips de Pury & Co. From the success of ‘The Mother Project’, the artist published her first book ‘Daddy, where are you?’ (2007), set in and around her mother’s home in Georgia, and five years later she released the children’s book, ‘Alphabet Book’ (2013). Gearon lives and works on the West Coast in the United States.
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled, 2001

Edition of 100
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
Your Offer *
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
TIERNEY GEARON
Untitled, 2001

Edition of 100
50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
Tierney Gearon (American, b. 1963)

Untitled , 2001

50(w) x 40(h) cm
20.00(w) x 15.98(h) inches
Chromogenic print.

Print unsigned.

Only 35 printed of the edition of 100.
Edition of 100
PRICE
$ 360.00 Available from a private collection
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
Representing four works from Gearon’s break-through series, Untitled (Mohawk, New York), Untitled (Palm Springs), Untitled (Utah) and Untitled were released in 2001 in connection with the exhibition in London. The photographic editions were printed as Chromogenic prints in an exclusive collaboration between the artist and Eyestorm. Each edition of 100, of which only 35 were printed, are signed and numbered on verso.

On 15th of March 2001, the Crown Prosecution Service in London decided not to proceed with complaints made against Saachi Gallery.

You can find more information about the four photographic editions, and see them in further details, on Tierney Gearon’s artist page here.
 
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