American designer and art enthusiast Murray Moss shares his collection of vintage press photographs at Edelman Arts' latest exhibit, Tertium Quid. Through the pairing of 100s of images, Moss constructs a narrative between various decades, headlines, and news events, ultimately creating a third story- a tertium quid- out of independently existing reports. After opening his self-named design store and art gallery in 1994, Moss turned his interests towards curating the work of past and present designers. The Moss Gallery served as a space to archive the history of design while promoting a sense of narrative and experimental functionality. With these standards in mind, Moss' collection Tertium Quid weaves a silent anecdote through the curious pairing of historical images, collected over a period of two years and reaching back as far as 1918.
"These photographs cannot be evaluated by currently established standards of what constitutes a 'good art print'; created as functional visual aides to be seen not on a gallery wall but in newsprint, they wear their professional graffiti and 'blue collar' past with a rare dignity," Moss states. Each image is framed with a clear glass back, leaving in sight the annotations and notes that give meaning to its visual representations.
Rather than allowing these events to slip from modern recognition, Moss bestows in them new life and exposes the beauty of insightful common ground. Tertium Quid illustrates the history of American news stories throughout the past century and surpasses both the physical corrosion and abstract distancing caused by the passing of time.
Tertium Quid is open now through August 15 at Edelman Arts.
Text by Kate Marin
All images courtesy of the artist.