Paesaggi, ritratti e video. 18 May-22 July 2004. This exhibition is puzzling. It could be understood as based on the friendship between an old photographer and a young one. It cannot be a co-operation because Burckhardt died in 1999. (I was his first wife.)
Bittencourt came from Brazil to New York, Burkhardt came from Basel to New York. Here are Italian landscapes by both, portraits of famous artists by both. Bittencourts are in colour, Burckhardts in cool classic black and white. There are videos by both, Burckhardt of New York, Bittencourt about Burckhardt, the amusing "Man in the Woods". Both are so technically wanting, they afford little pleasure.
Burckhardt altered and deepened our perception of New York. He was the master of gravely poetic images of the city, of its dark canyons outlined against the sky full of hurrying people. Here the only traces of his gently penetrating lesson is the video of his classic, "The Climate of New York". Of course his Sicilian and Ischian views are haunting too, so are the portraits of Bill and Elaine de Kooning, of Marisol, Joan Mitchell, Pollock, Rothko and so on, when they were intense and not yet famous.
However to present Burckhardt without the measured lyricism of his downtown Manhattan pictures is like showing Canaletto without Venice.