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Legends of Photography at Art Up Gallery

Written By The Mountain Eagle on 4/12/24 | 4/12/24

Legendary photographers Chris Moore and Elaine Mayes at Art Up in Margaretville 

Moore chatting with fashion experts Lisa Susan Scalf and Mercedes Gonzalez 

Photography on display by Elaine Mayes 

Visitor at Art Up viewing the works of Chris Moore


MARGARETVILLE — The opening reception of Elaine Mayes and Christopher Moore was a great opportunity to meet and mingle with these two very accomplished street photographers accompanied by close friends and loved ones at the Margaretville gallery Art Up this past Saturday.  Mayes included several of her photos from Hawaii and one of her epic San Fransisco 1960’s images. While Moore shared some of his street images of NYC and other photos of his travels. 

Mayes has an impressive body of work extending back to 1967 Haight-Ashbury San Francisco street portraits, as well as her book called ‘It Happened in Monterey’ of the epic concert of the Monterey Pop Festival which included photos of The Who, Grateful Dead, The Mammas and the Papas, Janis Joplin, and more.  Mayes is featured in a documentary called the ‘Complete Monterey Pop’ which features commentary of her experiences at this historic musical event. Mayes moved to NYC and was a founding member and chair of the NYU Tisch School photography department. Included in the Art Up gallery exhibition is a photograph of hippies that Mayes said she followed down to the beach. Mayes has traveled the world shooting photos and many of the images she chose for this exhibition are very impressive images that represent her extraordinary eye for captivating iconic scenes through her travels. At this exhibition, it was a bit too loud to get a full interview with Mayes, but there’s hope that a more extensive interview with her will happen in the Mountain Eagle soon. 

As for Mr. Moore, this reporter had the joy of spending time with him on the Friday before the opening reception for several hours at Art Up listening to his epic tales of what it was like coming up in the photography world through the nineteen seventies and eighties. 

Moore outlines his pathway into the world of photography, “Photography for me began with the Christmas gift of a Kodak Fiesta Camera from my grandmother in the early 1960s. Later, armed with a photography degree from Pratt Institute, I moved into the working world with three great jobs for a young person, first as a lab technician, then as first assistant for a well-known commercial photographer”.  Moore is a fascinating person to listen to, as he’s a tremendous storyteller. One of his favorite memories is of working with Jerry Abramowitz on the Billy Joel ‘Turnstiles’ album cover shoot at the Astor Place subway station. Moore recalls the annoyed subway riders trying to get on with their day with a huge photo shoot production blocking the turnstiles, as Joel’s wife, Christie Brinkley, was sitting in her Bentley up street level. Moore also spent several years on the staff of Pratt Institute’s photography tech department. He says, “It was like heaven because I had been fully funded to experiment with all the tools and film available at the expense of the college.” 

When Moore branched out on his own, he describes this period of needing to be explicitly perfect with his shoots. He recalls working for thirty-one days straight on occasions, “I subsequently founded my own studio, producing editorial work for such clients as New York Magazine and Fairchild Publications, before moving into catalog work for outlets like Bloomindale's and Fairchild. It was a great living, until it wasn't. Now I'm free to concentrate on my art. My interests are eclectic and wide-ranging, although I have a particular attraction to urban details. I've never lost my passion for images captured by a camera. For me, photography is magic.” 

As for Moore’s street-photography, he preferred old nineteen thirties Zeiss Kodak cameras that would only be good for three shots at a time, but he says he preferred them because they were far superior for black and white photos compared to anything else. However, today Moore is fascinated with his new Fuji camera. Moore’s two most impressive pieces in this exhibition are the Peggy’s Cove Nova Scotia busted up fishing boat which is a rugged but intriguing colorful image from this well-known fishing community. Moore also includes a series of NYC street scenes which features a Felix the Cat graffiti image that is incredibly impressive. Moore has also donated a print to the upcoming Margaretville Hospital auction fundraiser event that will be happening in May. 

See @artupmargaretville on Instagram for more information This exhibition runs through April 28th 



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