Photo Ex Machina

Photographer John McCarthy takes a fantastical look at the new George S. and Dolores Dore Eccles TheaterPhotos by John McCarthy Corner of First and Main, looking southeast We tend to think of photography as capturing a moment of reality—freeze-framing a single visual instant in the never-ending and complex stream of living, fixing a moment of change, stopping time. But technology always alters art. John McCarthy’s mammoth detailed photographs of downtown Salt Lake City involve taking a stream of panoramic shots, then manipulating a single image across three different computer platforms—each with its own set of idiosyncrasies and glitches. In the course of refining and processing them, he found the images were digitally mutating. The Edison Street promenade behind the theater “At first I thought they were failures,” McCarthy says. “The computer…

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