For Daniel Murtagh, the essence of a good portrait is ‘Presence’ , the experience of a person not merely seen, but felt .
“I like to compare it to the experience in music , a certain combination of sounds expresses the intent of the composer” His work draws strongly from film narrative, influenced by the films of Bergman, Tarkovsky and Kieslowski among others , However each Shoot , with its unique location and individual portrait subject brings with it a wholly original narrative and aesthetic . Painting has also been a strong resource particularly with ambient interior light inwhich figures emerge from shadow and are illuminated as if from within. “Time stands still in this exchange from portrait subject to veiwer. and the artists ‘role’ really becomes irrelevant ,..its really about identifying with the figure inhabiting the image” Photography is a sort of epitaph of a moment a distant gaze held trance like in time.
I believe there is a need for a return to the Romantic and even heroic in art, exemplified in painting before the turn of the 19th century.However this is not simply a nod toward history as much as a simple intent towards creating something timeless and in so doing reveal universal truths,..which can be as relevant now as at any other period of art.
Daniel Murtagh has been working as a portrait photographer since 1995. Upon graduating from Pratt Institute he moved to New Mexico and later to San Francisco, where he spent the next six years defining a style of work that continues to evolve. He has worked on assignments for magazines such as Soma, San Francisco, Health, Splash, Men’s Health, and Hippocrates, and his work has appeared in Elle, Shots, American Photographer and Photo Icon. His images have appeared on over 80 book covers.
In 2000 he returned to his native New York. In 2013 Daniel exhibited in the Month of Photography show in Denver Co. and was on board as one of its curators in Denver in 2015 as well as exhibitor the event. More recently exhibited in a solo show at the Wild Project Gallery in New York and is currently represented by Cabinet des Curieux Gallery in Paris.In addition to photography, he works in film and sound. He has made six films, among which The Last Judgement was shown at the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg Russia. Daniel’s music compositions can be heard at https://soundcloud.com/magooin. [Official Website]