Los Angeles filmmaker Alex Prager is back with an exhibition of larger-than-life cinematic photographs and a new short film featuring actress Elizabeth Banks, in which the wardrobes are retro and the atmosphere is thick with intrigue and no small measure of claustrophobia. This year’s series Face in the Crowd debuts at Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC, and sees Prager’s vision expand in scale. Elaborately staged crowd scenes are central to this new work, with sets including an airport terminal and a beach constructed for the project and a small army of costumed actors brought in.
In Face in the Crowd, Prager’s lens shifts perspective to pick out otherwise unnoticed moments of drama unfold from above – look out for Hollywood star Elizabeth Banks amid the jostling throng. As with the artist’s previous stills series, such as Mise-en-scène from shorts Despair and Le Petit Mort, the root cause of all the drama remains hidden off-screen – this is an artist who likes to keep the viewer guessing with ambiguous characters and situations. In all, 33 works are included in the exhibition, which runs from 23 November to 9 March.