Brian Ulrich arrived in Syracuse after a two-day drive from Chicago. He made the trip on a half-tank of diesel fuel and with a broken ankle, no less. Ulrich arrived loaded down with cases of negatives from his ongoing project Copia that he plans to scan on one of our Imacon scanners. Having recently secured funding for the printing of a book based on this series, Ulrich will also work on image selection and a book dummy during his stay at Light Work.
Ulrich has spent the last nine years researching and shooting the images in Copia, a series for which he won a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 2009. About the project Ulrich writes, “I have been engaged with a long-term photographic examination of the peculiarities and complexities of the consumer-dominated culture in which we live. This project titled Copia explores not only the everyday activities of shopping, but the economic, cultural, social, and political implications of commercialism and the roles we play in self-destruction, over-consumption, and as targets of marketing and advertising.” The images simultaneously depict the visual frenzy created by an overabundance of commercial choice as well as a loneliness and sterility that seems interlaced with this environment.
Ulrich has exhibited his work at many venues, most recently at Robert Koch Gallery in San Francsico; Julie Saul Gallery, New York City; and the FotoFest Biennial in Houston, Texas. While not travelling the country making work, Ulrich teaches part time at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.