About this artwork
David Hartt’s Seven Portraits is a portfolio of photographs of seven contemporary buildings across the Americas, ranging from the Seattle Library by Rem Koolhaas to Restaurante Mestizo in Santiago, Chile, by Smiljan Radic. The portfolio was commissioned by the Illinois Institute of Technology’s College of Architecture in partnership with PIN-UP magazine to celebrate the inaugural Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize and was first published as a supplement in the magazine. For a later unique commission by the Art Institute, Hartt produced these 12 large panels featuring both published and unpublished photos from the project.
Unlike architectural photographers, who typically attempt to convey the designer’s vision, Hartt used this work to free buildings from the preconceptions of their architects. He emphasized the ordinary and the unexpected, like a plant growing in the crack of a deck or a building’s facade in the background of a quinceañera photoshoot. The series shows Hartt’s interest in the specificity of place and the cultural and social meanings of built environments. Instead of presenting an architect’s idealized intentions for a space, these photographs examine the personal, idiosyncratic encounters between a building and its context and inhabitants. Seven Portraits prompts reflection on the unpredictable ways humans use and experience design, giving buildings purpose far beyond what architects can predict.
- Currently Off View
- Architecture and Design
- David Hartt
- Seven Portraits (Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize, Pin-Up Fall Winter 2014/15 Supplement): Capilla del Retiro (Auco, Chile), Undurraga Devés Arquitectos
- Made 2018
- Archival pigment print mounted to Dibond
- 229 × 152 cm (90 × 60 in.)
- Chauncey and Marion Deering McCormick Foundation and Eloise W. Martin Legacy Fund