Robert Polidori

Born in 1951 in Montreal, Robert Polidori is considered one of the world’s leading architectural photographers. Creating meticulously detailed, large-scale color photographs, which transcend the limits of pure architectural photography, Polidori’s images record a visual citation of both past and present, an extraordinary invocation of history and modernity within the confines of a single frame. Through the photograph’s ability to mummify the present moment, Polidori’s work eschews nostalgia in favor of the poignancy of absolute reality.

Now living in New York, Polidori, has exhibited widely in the US, France and Germany and had his first solo exhibition in the UK, at Flowers Central in September 2005. Recent museum exhibitions include the Martin Gropius Bau, Berlin and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

As staff photographer to The New Yorker, Polidori travels to far reaches of the world, often gaining access to remote or restricted locations. He is fascinated by the remnants and traces of life that he finds scattered in hallways, left in back rooms and worn on facades. His photographs are simultaneously seductive and melancholy, portraying the rich colors and textures of neglected and estranged cities, including Chernobyl, Versailles, Havana and most recently New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Robert won the World Press Award in 1998, and he has twice won the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award for Magazine Photography (1999 and 2000). He has published eleven photo books, most recently After The Flood (Steidl, 2006), and a three-volume compilation of his pictures of Versailles, Robert Polidori: Parcours Museologique Revisite (Steidl, 2009). His major solo exhibitions include a mid-career retrospective at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, and his work is held in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; and the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris.