Jeffrey Milstein - British Airways Boeing 747-400
American, b.1944
British Airways Boeing 747-400, 2006
Ultrachrome pigmented inkjet, 20 x 40 inches
Edition 3/15

Gift of Nicki and J. Ira Harris (BBA '59)

Jeffrey Milstein, a photographer, designer, and architect, grew up in Los Angeles and studied art and architecture at the University of California at Berkeley. His interest in aviation and photography began in high school; he took flying lessons at the age of seventeen and has maintained his private pilot's license since that time. He continues to be amazed by the splendor and efficiency of the jet aircraft: "I freeze time and motion at a precise moment, allowing the viewer to linger, explore, and reflect, on the beauty, strength, and grace of these aircraft in their many variations. That these metal birds can gracefully lift from earth is amazing, that they can return safely some hours later on another part of the globe is even more amazing."

Once upon a time, passenger airliners were rare. Families would make special outings to airports to stand on observation decks and watch the speedy silver birds take to the air and land. Now, huge, powerful jet aircraft seem as ordinary as buses and most people hardly pay attention to them anymore. But Jeffrey Milstein still sees them with wonder and delight, and he photographs them in flight in such a way that they come alive again as the amazing, efficient machines they truly are.

Jeffrey Milstein captured this Boeing 747 just before it landed on the runway at Los Angeles International Airport. Though traveling at 200 miles per hour, the detail is remarkably sharp; the underbelly of the jet reflects the ground below. When he prints the photographs, he digitally eliminates the background to isolate the portrait of the airplane, emphasizing its unique construction, coloring, and personality. He takes the familiar object and lifts it into art by causing us to see it in a brand-new way.