The Island Position

John Lehr

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The Island Position is an advertising term used to describe the premium position of an advertisement surrounded solely by editorial content.
John Lehr’s series of the same name describes the familiar facades that line the main streets and thoroughfares of America’s cities and towns. These office spaces and storefronts have clearly been around for a while, and the surfaces betray a dizzying accumulation of hopeful signs, makeshift repairs, and patchwork paint jobs. Lehr portrays each subject as an organism straining and mutating in order to maintain its own significance. The surfaces are flattened, synthetically vibrant, and geometrically abstract, emphasizing the disparate materials cobbled together in a rush to remain relevant. The photographs call attention to gestures of sincerity that border on the absurd and unite the accidental into images of urgent clarity. In doing so Lehr creates a frantic and expressive visual rebuttal to habitual ways of seeing.