The Village Voice July 6, 2016

Edward Hopper's Gas (1940) shows a middle-of-nowhere filling station flanked by forest trees, a solitary figure attending to one of the pumps as night falls. In his clever and subversive series "Gas Stations," now on view at the Edward Hopper House, David LaChapelle constructs a tweak on this piece, stripping the human figure out of the picture and transforming the tone from patient, wistful Americana to something approaching environmental anger. Where the trees sway softly in the background of Gas, the greenery in LaChapelle's six-piece series encroaches on Chevron and Shell stations with a creeping menace, protruding at odd angles and making its presence felt in the foreground as well. LaChapelle crafted these eye-catching works by photographing scaled models of gas refineries, which he and a team built using recycled materials (egg cartons, tea canisters, hair curlers). Setting the works in the heart of night (the series is much darker, visually, than Gas), LaChapelle lends the stations an almost magical neon glow, shining brightly as nature closes in.

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