Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
December 23, 2015

Seasons Greetings

Brian Ulrich. Centurion. Jewelry photo. Store window.

I assume you’re familiar with Brian Ulrich’s visual examination of consumer culture? His website surveys the evolution of this insightful work. Brian’s newest installment, “Centurion,” focuses specifically on the wealthy and the uber-wealthy. (Here’s the write up and slide show at Wired.)

More abstract than most of the recently published photos, this image from a Swarovski window display is specifically appropriate at this holiday and gift-giving season. I like how shimmery it is, how magical, how starry. At the same time, I like how these jewels undulating in your face (it’s like a neckline, too, no?) are about decadence and the manufacture of desire. This is a particular week to keep an eye on that ratio.

We’ll be taking taking a few days off and will return on Monday.

(photo: Brian Ulrich. caption: Swarovski, Chicago, IL 2013)

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