Roe Ethridge is a fine art and commercial photographer who captures his varied subjects in vivid detail, but in ways that challenge the viewer's perspective of the ordinary. He is also a leader in conceptual photography, making art using what he calls "editorial mode," directly borrowing images from others and from his own commercial outtakes, then recombining them and re-presenting them to alter their contexts and meanings. Ethridge says that he is interested in the concept of the "fugue," which is a compositional structure in music but also a psychiatric state, usually short-lived, in which a person forgets aspects of his or her own identity. This inspiration is evident in his photographs, which are tightly composed but often unsettling.
Ethridge's work has been shows extensively in the United States and internationally. His photographs have appeared in solo exhibitions at venues such as the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston and the Garage Center for Contemporary Culture in Moscow, as well as in group exhibitions such as the 2008 Whitney Biennial, New Photography 2010 at the Museum of Modern Art, and Greater New York (2000) at MoMA PS1.