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COOL HUNTING

Matthew Huber

by Ami Kealoha in Culture on 04 August 2006

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Whether mobile phones or silver instruments that look like horror film props, objects through New York-based photographer Matthew Huber's lens pop off the page in sharp, vivid detail. His work's clean, direct visual language has earned him commercial clients like Out, Nylon, GMC, Real Simple, and Metropolitan Home, but Huber's personal work—totally unique images rife with irony and metaphor—are where his style comes to life. Though some pieces, like flattened musical instruments (bought on ebay, flattened at a friend's sheet metal factory) and a goldfish submerged in a champagne glass do get some digital manipulation, Huber says most of his work happens on film and that, as much as he pre-visualizes images, he leaves room for error during a shoot. His martini glass series, for example, involved an elaborate set up with a bungee cord-rigged piece of plexiglass that triggered a strobe flash, requiring a completely dark room. The upshot ranges from the ordered chaos of liquid that appears to float above glasses to shattered stems resulting from the tricky shoot—Huber broke 11 glasses in all. Like the glassware series, much of Huber's portfolio includes work that either makes the mundane fantastic or the other way around. For the recent never before shown series that takes sex toys as its subject (after the jump), Huber applied his near-clinical image-making process to taboo items that are usually secreted away. Similarly, an ongoing collaborative project that the photographer has been working on since 2001 with his girlfriend, Patricia Korth-Mcdonnell, a writer, is a survey of everyday women's breasts with accompanying anecdotal interviews. Moving fluidly between the commercial and the art worlds, Huber's considerable skill as a photographer is evident in his ability to communicate visually with precision—as well as in the stunning effects created with lighting, composition, sheet metal presses, bungee cords, etc.

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