Photographer Paul Lange

Photographer Paul Lange


One of our favorite photographers is Mr. Paul Lange, noted for his breathtaking floral work and collected by tastemakers the world over. We thought the flair and romance of his photographs was perfect for the month of February. Here, five thoughtful questions for the artist, just in time for his upcoming lecture in Palm Beach:

Big Blooms: PALOMA, 2014

Big Blooms:
PALOMA, 2014


Jada Loveless: You’ve worked with such incredible talent over the years in your editorial work. Who would you say were some of your favorite portrait subjects?

Paul Lange: I love the challenge of making portraits that conjure the human spirit in just a single frame. And my favorite portrait subjects are everyone who willingly collaborated with me over the course of hundreds of exposures in each sitting!


JL: Tell us more about your upcoming event in Palm Beach. How did that come about?

PL: I was invited to be a guest speaker at the Society of the Four Arts in partnership with the Garden Club of Palm Beach. I’m so honored to be a featured speaker there on March 10th, 2016 at 2:30pm. The title of my talk is “Fifty Acres: In Zezé’s Garden.”

Fowl Portraits: Pip, 2009, Indian Blue/Black Shouldered Peacock

Fowl Portraits:
Pip, 2009, Indian Blue/Black Shouldered Peacock


JL: Your work is collected by so many notables, including lauded tastemakers like Aerin Lauder. What would you say are some of your favorite homes and environments you’ve seen your work find a home in?

PL: Working directly with my collectors opens a dialogue that I value greatly, and that I need to thrive as an artist. It’s incredible to see how each person selects and displays my work. From a feature wall in a gorgeous room, to an intimate grouping of multiple images, to an installation on an exterior wall that frames the entry to a magical garden, I am continually awed and inspired by their unique vision. I feel like the luckiest guy in the world to be able to work with such amazing collectors!


JL: Tell us a bit more in your own words about your ongoing 50 Acres project. 

PL: In 2006, I began photographing a fifty acre garden and farm owned by dear friends, the renowned florist Zezé and his wife Peggy, that is close to my home in the Hudson Valley. Photographing each element scores of times over the last ten years has allowed me to explore both the conceptual, and technical nuances of my creative process, as I evolved from my former career as a fashion photographer in NYC. The entire “Fifty Acres” collection is comprised of four series: Big Blooms, Fowl Portraits, Paradisus and Disturbed Paradise. Each of these functions as a different form of exploration within the greater context of the landscape, and the creatures which occupy it. 

From the beginning I knew that I wanted to combine my love of formal portraiture, with the entropy of nature. While this served as the genesis of Big Blooms and Fowl Portraits, there remained a degree of uncertainty that occurred when photographing in the field that I felt was integral to the gestalt of the project. In Big Blooms, I photograph each flower isolated on a stark white background and lit as I would a human portrait subject. Unique specimens are critical and are selected from the hundreds that I cut from Zezé’s lush flower gardens, or that he sends from his shop in NYC. I celebrate exceptional women in this series, naming my Big Blooms for historical and cultural icons from all time … and even to honor a few whom I have been fortunate to know.


Portraits: Melena



Fowl Portraits are inspired by 17th century Dutch portrait paintings, and are photographed outdoors in a makeshift studio, that I construct on the premises. After years of working to establish a connection with these wild creatures, I am convinced each subsequent time, that I am advancing into their feathered world. In fact, progressively, as I venture into their world, these individual birds bravely and curiously venture into mine, and my photographs are a poignant tribute to our species blending interactions. To honor the original settlers in the Hudson Valley, I assign Early American and Dutch names to my fowl subjects, signifying each one who walks onto my canvas.

Paradisus and Disturbed Paradise, while complimentary to one another in terms of subject matter, diverge in terms of their influences. Paradisus is a place of contentment in which existence is positive, harmonious and timeless. Through systematic scrutiny and repeated investigation over the years, subtle changes in the otherwise cyclic passing of time began to emerge. The photographs are both an interpretation and a record of those changes. Conversely, Disturbed Paradise is a continuation of my photographic experiments when I was a student at RIT, and is informed strongly by the Expressionistic and Impressionistic movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with the use of extremely precise camera motion as the motor of abstraction.

It is the unique collusion of these elements both organic and mechanical, that makes these photographs possible. “Fifty Acres” is my ongoing study of nature’s ephemeral beauty in milliseconds, months, and years.


JL: What’s next for you?

PL: Every day is new! I have some exciting new exhibition opportunities in the works … and eventually there will be a book, or books, about “Fifty Acres.” Meanwhile, I’m continually making photographs, and experimenting with new ideas!