Max Steven Grossman


For Max Steven Grossman, photography and its manipulation is a medium that permits us to reflect upon our reality. His focus upon constructed photography and on subjects that are on the verge of being lost or going extinct in our contemporary world are present throughout his work. Through fabricated compositions, Grossman posits that even photography as a medium has changed fundamentally from its initial use. Whereas newspapers would use photographs as proof, society currently questions the reality garnered from any photograph, including those of the news.

Grossman’s past series have included animals on the brink of extinction as well as assembled libraries presenting books that are being replaced by computers, Kindles, and digital versions.

In his series Persevering Natura, he looks upon our earth and the cycles inherent in climactic changes. With the melting of glaciers and ice comes more land, and eventually, Grossman hints at certain theories that in a far off future the cycle will turn on itself, and the green will again be colonized by ice. For the artist, our reality is just a speck in the history of the universe, we are part of a larger and grander cycle that may well continue in an infinity eight, just as the serpent Moebius where there is no true beginning and no true end. There is the notion of the inevitability of change, and the fact that things are happening so slowly we do not stop to truly notice, given that our life span on earth is so short and punctual that we will never truly grasp what is happening, and therefore what is changing.

With his series “On the Road,” Max-Steven Grossman uses road and highway landscapes quickly captured with low shutter speeds to create a lasting relationship between motion and color, registering a moment that would otherwise pass by unnoticed and be lost to our eyes. Fleeting and unsalvageable sights when viewed with our simple retina, these images are attached to certain cities such as Bogotá, New York, Sao Paulo, and Cape Town. Yet the connection lies solely in the title, since these photographs of specific landscapes and locations have been blurred beyond comprehension, and thus have lost all direct representation of the place where they were taken. Through the abstraction of the notion of location, Grossman leaves the viewer to question the reality of what is consistently perceived to be exact and true.

In his Bookscapes series, artist Max-Steven Grossman creates libraries that exist only in his photographs. The purpose of these works is to register bookshelves from various backgrounds, reorganize them through digital procedures, and create a vast archive of ideas, concepts and titles that any connoisseur of a specific field of study, should have.

The relationship that each viewer develops with these libraries is completely personal and occurs exclusively in the realm of his imagination. Like Walter Benjamin, who once narrated his personal friendship with each of his books while unpacking them from a trunk, Grossman creates a work where each individual will develop a personal dialogue with the image. This dialogue will originate from their past readings, their desire to read the unread, the admiration for the sea of knowledge contained therein, or the fear of facing the great unknown. However, what is truly important is that the viewer-image relationship is one of contemplation and awe before the impossibility of accessing all the real yet unattainable knowledge presented in these photographs. Paula Silva

His series "Seascapes" uses the same beach background, juxtaposed with another photograph to create a totally different physiological affect on the viewer. Some of the beaches have a semi truck located on them while others may have delapidated buildings. Some of the elements like the semi truck contain Grossman's other personal photographs such as the "Bookscapes" integrated into them. The final product is a photograph that makes us believe in something that would naturally be preserved as unlikely or impossible to be comprehended to be perfectly normal. It creates an escape from our realities.

An engineer with a Master’s degree in Photography from NYU and the International Center of Photography, Grossman has exhibited his work internationally in institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art in Cartagena, Colombia, the Museum of Modern Art in Barranquilla, Colombia. Represented by Beatriz Esguerra Art, Grossman has shown his work in fairs such as ARTBO in Colombia, Dallas Art Fair in Texas, Art Wynwood in Miami, Art Southampton in Long Island, NY, and ArteBA in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He has also exhibited in countries such as Switzerland, Panama and Spain. His work is represented by Axiom Contemporary, LA, Baker Sponder, Boca Ratón and Stricoff Fine Art, NYC.