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In 2002, Patterson moved from Brooklyn, New York to Memphis, Tennessee to work with the photographer William Eggleston. In 2005, Patterson completed his first project, Sound Affects, a collection of color photographs that explore Memphis as a visual and musical place, and utilize light and color as visual analogues to sound and music. In 2008, a Sound Affects monograph was published by Edition Kaune, Sudendorf (Cologne).
Also in 2005, Patterson began working on his second project, Redheaded Peckerwood, which is loosely inspired by the late 1950s killing spree of Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate across Nebraska. Photographs are the heart of this work, but they are complemented and informed by documents and objects that belonged to the killers and their victims. Later that year, Patterson moved back to New York.
In 2011, a Redheaded Peckerwood monograph was published by Mack (London) and named one of the best books of the year by numerous noted international photography critics. The book was nominated for the 2012 Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards and won the 2012 Recontres d’Arles Author Book Award. It will feature in The Photobook: A History, Vol. 3, edited by Gerry Badger and Martin Parr.
- Another Time, Another Place, and You, Southside Gallery, Oxford, MS (2003)
- Sound Affects, Power House, Memphis, TN (2005)
- Sound Affects, Yancey Richardson Gallery, New York, NY (2006)
- Sound Affects, Robert Koch Gallery, San Francisco, CA (2007)
- Sound Affects, Kaune, Sudendorf Contemporary, Cologne, Germany (2008)
- Sound Affects & Redheaded Peckerwood, Robert Morat Galerie, Hamburg, Germany (2012)
- Redheaded Peckerwood, Rose Gallery, Santa Monica, CA (2013)
- Sound Affects. Cologne: Edition Kaune, Sudendorf, 2008
- Redheaded Peckerwood. Self-published, 2010
- Redheaded Peckerwood. London: Mack, 2011. ISBN 978-1-907946-14-1
Books with others
- Lost Home. Edition of 1,000. Tokyo: Super Labo, 2013. ISBN 978-4-905052-57-9
- Bottom of the Lake. Subscription Series #4, Book #1. Edition of 1,500. Oakland: TBW Books, 2013
- Eyecurious: "Photobooks 2011: And the Winner is..."
- World Photography Organization: "2012 Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards"
- The Rencontres d'Arles Award Winners: 2012
- John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation
- Christian Patterson artist website
- Rose Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
- Robert Morat Gallery, Hamburg/Berlin, Germany