Through an extensive collection of slow motion black-and-white videos, Josh Melnick’s The 8 Train takes advantage of cutting edge scientific video technology to re-examine the function of portraiture. Set against the familiar backdrop of the New York City subway, Melnick’s split-second portraits of New York City subway riders extend a fraction of real time in the life of each rider for several minutes, creating an ethereal sense of suspended time somewhere between photographic stillness and cinematic motion. In The 8 Train, Melnick explores portraiture as a means of reorienting our perception of human relationships. Viewers are invited into the intimate textures and narratives of strangers from all walks of life, each of whom could be any one of us.
Josh Melnick is a graduate of Yale University. Formally trained in sculpture, Melnick began his career in film editing and directing. His work has been featured in film festivals around the world; he has twice taken part in RES, and twice taken part at Cannes. His music videos have garnered multiple MVPA and MTV nominations. In 2008, Melnick was selected for the Art in General New Commissions program; in 2009 he was awarded the ARC Grant from the Durfee foundation. This is his first solo exhibition.
The 8 Train is part of Art in General’s New Commissions Program, which is made possible by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts; The National Endowment for the Arts; the Jerome Foundation; and Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro.