Press Releases

Urban Noir: L.A.-N.Y. Photographs of Helen K. Garber


NEW PALTZ -- Photographer Helen K. Garber’s urban nocturnes are the subject of the exhibition Urban Noir: L.A.– N.Y. opening Saturday, October 6 with a reception from 2-4 p.m. at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at the State University of New York at New Paltz. The exhibition will be on view through November 18.

Shrine Oscars
Helen K. Garber, 2000

At night, Garber turns a city into a vast theatrical set, dramatically lit by strategically placed lights. In doing so, Garber concentrates on New York and Los Angeles as symbols of cultural and visual power that connect the complementary intensities of high and popular culture and articulate the links between east coast and west coast aesthetics.

Garber cites a Brooklyn childhood, a love of noir cinema and art photography, a long involvement in the world of theatre and performance, a catalyzing night-time visit to the top of the Empire State Building, and being taught as a child to be afraid of the city after dark as key influences upon her photography. Furthermore, she recognizes Alfred Hitchcock and Woody Allen as being great influences on her work for their visual style, sense of humor and musical soundtracks.

Houston Street Noir
Helen K. Garber, 2005

Helen K. Garber’s work has been exhibited at numerous venues including the Venice Biennale 10th International Architecture Exhibition, The Norton Museum of Art, and the Houston Center for Photography. Her photographs are in the permanent collections of some of the finest cultural institutions including The George Eastman House, International Museum of Film and Photography, and The Brooklyn Museum. Garber’s photographs have appeared in The New York Times and in Families at Last (Random House) 1999, Aperture Books, the L.A. Times, New York Magazine, American Photo and others. Garber earned her B.S. degree in Theatre Arts from SUNY New Paltz in 1976.

The SDMA is passionate about increasing art awareness and appreciation by providing engaging programs, events and tours for educators, students, faculty, and the general public. For Urban Noir: L.A. – N.Y. a special Gallery Talk featuring artist Helen K. Garber will be held on Saturday, October 13 at 2 p.m. Additionally, docent-guided tours of select exhibitions are regularly scheduled for Sundays at 1:30 p.m. All of these programs are free and open to all.

About the museum

The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art is dedicated to collecting, researching, interpreting, and exhibiting works of art from diverse cultures. The permanent collection spans a period of almost 4,000 years. Areas of specialization include 20th century paintings and works on paper, Asian and Pre-Columbian art and artifacts, metals and photographs. SDMA has a special commitment to collecting and exhibiting important works of art created by artists who have lived and worked in the Hudson Valley and Catskill regions. The Museum is a major cultural resource in the Hudson Valley serving a broad-based constituency from both on and beyond the New Paltz campus.

Museum information

Hours: Tuesday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.

Closed on university holidays and intersession

(845) 257-3844

The museum is wheelchair accessible

Admission is free and the museum is open to all.

If you are a person with a disability who will require special accommodations please contact Amy Pickering at 845.257.3844
no later than one week before the event.