From April 01, 2021 to April 30, 2021
In the Street: An Expression of Faith
A humanist portrayal of New York City's social landscape of religious faith. Candid and without comment or sentimentality, unselfconscious in its theatricality and self-presentation. Displaying ourselves with grace and a sense of timelessness. Our lives, in a matter of seconds, are caught in the act...where the obvious and mundane transition into something more powerful and provocative.
Though not from a religious background, I couldn't help but notice how much daily, informal faith-based expression took place in the street outside the strictures and formal confines of organized religion…churches, temples and mosques.
Despite the inordinate stresses of daily life in a large city, people of all faiths were able to hold on to their deeply held religious beliefs. It is this quality of the human condition I've always attempted to capture in my photography.
To paraphrase Dorothea Lange "...We see not only with our eyes but with all that we are and all that our culture is..."
While trying not to be too obvious in what I'm photographing...leaving room for the viewer to fill in the blanks, these images were taken at an emotional distance with no interaction with the subject so as not to create a moral position. Photographing people in these intimate moments could be seen as violating them...by seeing them as they never see themselves.
Curator: Trevor Cole
Robert Virga is a photographer residing in the New York City metropolitan area. Though largely self-taught, he has taken Master Classes with Mary Ellen Mark and Bruce Davidson. Working with film and the traditional darkroom, his street photography portrays a social landscape of extremes, capturing reality at its most expressive. Richly emotional, lyrical and untainted by interference or staged detail. A tableau of relationships, the human condition, life and death. Reminding us of how large a fraction of what we see won't exist in its present form only a moment from now.
A humanist portrayal...candid and without comment or sentimentality, un-selfconscious in its theatricality and self-presentation. Displaying ourselves with grace and self-confidence, a sense of timelessness...and a little humor. In solitude and freed from any mystery.
Social documentary and romanticism combined in the same instant. Our lives, in a matter of seconds, are caught in the act... where the obvious and mundane transition into something more provocative.
His work has been featured in both solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Italy and Spain. In addition, he has been published and reviewed in, among others, Black and White Magazine, Photography Gala Awards, FotoNostrum Gallery, Urban Photo Awards, and winner of the 14th Pollux Street Photography Award.