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Two color-popping portraits of toy cars—new from Don Hamerman!

Red & White by Don Hamerman
10"x8" ($35) | 14"x11" ($75) | 20"x16" ($260) | 30"x24" ($1350) | 40"x30" ($2500)

Yellow Pileup by Don Hamerman
10"x8" ($35) | 14"x11" ($75) | 20"x16" ($260) | 30"x24" ($1350) | 40"x30" ($2500)

We’re revving our engines this weekend with a visual pep rally, courtesy of two (yes two!) new vivid photographs from longtime 20x200 artist Don Hamerman: Yellow Pileup and Red & White. In preparing these prints for release, we worked closely with Hamerman to get the hues and brightness juuuuust right—their primary colors oughta be poppin’, their first impression practically prodigious. And man, we’re glad we put the work in because we’ll be turning to these nostalgic wonders in the dead of winter when we’re in serious need of a gray day waylay.

Another thing we’ll be relying on these two editions for? Holiday gifting. We’ve already added them to our Gift Guide for kids, kiddos being the ultimate sponges for inspiration (and thus the perfect recipients for a cool piece of art). But Yellow Pileup and Red & White would make killer gifts for car enthusiasts, color lovers, photography nerds, anyone who remembers playing with plenty of toys that didn’t require batteries (solidarity!)—we can think of about a dozen people on our lists who’d be head over heels for these new Hamermans. Including us. What … you don’t include yourself on your holiday shopping list?

Like the other matchbox car portraits in our Hamerman collection, these saturated stunners are set against solid backgrounds in corresponding colors. It gives the mini automobiles a regal air, their environment transformed to suit them. The matchbox toy portraits put the well-worn and mundane on a pedestal, as is also the case with Hamerman’s baseball series. In turning his camera to old school odds & ends of amusement, he pays homage to the past and the unassuming, easy, ephemeral joys that are so often used up and forgotten. Looking at the photographs, you’d be forgiven for thinking the tiny toys are supersized. In Hamerman’s words, “they become monumental, iconic, even majestic in their battered state.”

Unlike our other Hamerman miniature car images, both Yellow Pileup and Red & White feature multiples. The car stacks are sculptures of a sort, doubling down on the idea that there’s beauty to be found in their details, their forms, their patina, their repetition, and their relationship to one another. Presented this way, the cars create images that become less portrait-like and more of a moment or a mood. They feel as ambient as the memories no doubt associated with the 3-inch objects they contain.

Hamerman—who’s NYC born and now resides in Connecticut—is also drawn to this detritus of childhood recreation because it’s decidedly charger-free. It recalls a time when a pocket-sized diecast car and a little imagination could keep a kid occupied for hours. Use a little imagination while you’re looking at Yellow Pileup and Red & White and you just might find yourself fantasizing the day away. That’s a-ok.

With art for everyone,
Team 20x200

Tags: new art