Observing the sky after 11 September 2001, Dennis Adams photographed elements which had been lifted by drafts and were floating above the city of New York. The artist was only able to identify the objects after developing and enlarging the prints: you can read “He’s no terrorist”. The front page of the newspaper thrusts back to ‘the event’ of the 21st century and is revealed only through the detailed observation of the image; the painful twist of the newspaper could be a rustling wing. The simplicity of the process gives the work a poetic and prophetic dimension: a slight debris of a society, suspended between the sky and the earth in a blue infinite, sad news taken elsewhere, pieces of paper disintegrating. Violence, fracas and horror are audible in the silence of the image. These debris are transfigured into the silence of the victims flying towards a blue eternity. The artist pays a modest and painful homage. There is no taking sides, no judgment, just a flight in the sky. Dennis Adams sounds out collective memory, the public sphere, the urban context in their relations to art.
Since 1998, through site specific works, often in public spaces, or video works, Dennis Adams focuses on ambiguous characters, condemned by our recent history, revealing traumas or collective amnesia phenomena. The specific episodes from 20th or 21st century history he refers to find a relevance in today's sensitive actuality. Dennis Adams plays with the ideological power of images, by referring to cinema and media images, yet leaving their meaning open to interpretation: he does not state clearly his political stance, but underlines the complexity of history and lets the spectator form his own opinion.
Dennis Adams was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1948. He lives and works in New York