David Stephenson, an American who moved to Australia in 1982, has long brought a minimalist approach to maximalist subjects, from the horizon, to clouds, to Australia's icepack. In the last decade he has used his camera to register gloriously geometric patterns normally hidden from the naked eye. Using long exposures, he has photographically brought the sumptuously detailed cupolas in soaring European cathedrals, chapels, and palaces - normally cast in deep shadow- back to brilliant life. In a separate but conceptually linked project, using even longer exposures, he has caught otherworldly streaks of starlight in the night sky. His stargazing through the camera is a variation on his theme of vibrant geometric abstractions. By varying the intervals of his exposures, interrupting or making multiple exposures, he has created his own music of the spheres (Margarett Loke, The New York Times, 2/11/2000). Stephenson's cupola project has expanded to include over seventy-five sites in Europe, Russia and Turkey. The artist extended his interest in architecture to photograph naves and vaults in some of the greatest cathedrals of Europe in his series Vaults (2006-2007).
In Light Cities, Stephenson photographed night scenes of the major cities of the world, conveying the largesse of urban architecture. Shooting from a wide range of distances, Stephenson captures the luminous quality of the urban environment at night, reflecting a broad range of vivid colors in each cityscape seen through long exposures.