Out of the Pines | Wilma W. Daniels Gallery, Wilmington, NC

out of the pines.jpg

This January my worked will be exhibited in "Out of the Pines: Works by photography instructors from North Carolina Colleges and Universities" in the Wilma W. Daniels Gallery at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, NC. I am so happy to show work alongside my colleagues all over the state and look forward to meeting those who will be at the opening on Friday, January 26th 6-9pm. 

WATER | The Center for Fine Art Photography, Ft. Collins, CO

I am pleased to be a part of the exhibition "WATER" curated by Jennifer Murray on view now in Ft. Collins, CO at the Center for Fine Art Photography. Thank you C4FAP for all that you do!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FORT COLLINS, CO | November 17, 2017

Water 2017 Exhibition Events
Exhibition: December 22 – January 27, 2018 Free Admission
Artist + Public Reception: January 26, 6:00 – 8:00 pm (Doors at 5:30 ) Free

Water 2017 Photography Exhibition This exhibition presents the prominent theme of water within the art of photography, both visually and conceptually, and across a range of photographic genres. “Few things encompass such a range of emotion as water – beautiful, calming, useful, seductive, and deadly. Recurring themes emerge in this collection of images: environmental concerns including water usage and the built environment, pollution, and drought; and human fragility in the face of water’s sublime including images that depict both the real and fantastic relationships we have with and in water”.
–Juror Jennifer Murray, 2017.

49 Featured Artists: Nicholas Abriola, Babeth Albert, Julie Brook Alexander, S Brian Berkun, John Bonath, Melissa Borman, Claire Burnett, Lorraine Castillo, Eugene Daams, Marianne Dalton, Ellie Davies, Scott Durka, Rachel Ferguson, Jerry Freedner, Caroline Fudala, Alessandra Tecla Gerevini, Anahid Ghorbani, James Glass, Carole Glauber, Alexander Heilner, Ken Hochfeld, Marty Ittner, Stephan Jahanshahi, Leslie Jean-Bart, Rose Wind Jerome, Andrea Laue, Tracy Laulhere, Alan Leder, Heami Lee, Bonnie Levinson, Court Loving, Andy Mattern, Chris McCann, Teresa Meier, Carsten Meier, Bobby Mills, David Obermeyer, Jane Paradise, Heather Perera, Beverly Poppe, Karol Rice, Lee Saloutos, Debora Schwedhelm, Julie Stephenson, Graham Stewart, JP Terlizzi, Preston Utley, Katie Waugh, and John Zimet. 

+ Exhibitions and Receptions at C4FAP are always free and open to the public
+ Mingle with artists & art lovers at our reception Friday, January 26th from 5:30-8:00 pm
+ Please check our site at c4fap.org for event information and to sign up for email updates
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About C4FAP
Since 2004, The Center for Fine Art Photography has been a preeminent supporter of photography. As a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization, C4FAP is supported globally with donations, grants, and memberships. Based in Fort Collins, CO, the Center offers three public galleries with 20+ unique exhibitions yearly, classes, reviews and online exhibitions that give photographers and photography enthusiasts from all over the world an opportunity to engage with the Center and its community. For more information about C4FAP, including information on exhibitions, workshops, becoming a member or donor, please visit the website at C4FAP.ORG

http://www.c4fap.org/exhibitions/water-2017/
 

Andrea Fraser | Performance Artist - Sarah Thorton | Author

Reading the last page of "33 Artists in 3 Acts" by Sarah Thorton, author of "Seven Days in the Art World" is a relief. I kind of struggled through this book. Perhaps because I find the question "What is an artist?" as excruciating as many of the people who attempted to answer it seem to. The artists I've worked with over the years are extremely dissimilar, as are the 33 featured in this book. As described in this book, they seem to share two things in common- the label "artist" and their divergent goals and personal victories navigating the art world. No two are alike, even if married, and many disagree with each other's approach, practice and methods. That sums up so much of art to me that I find it amusing.

The artist who I was most intrigued by is Andrea Fraser. I am not going to repost any images from any of her performances here for fear of there being some big reason I'll get into trouble for it. I will say I am fully encouraging researching her more and I am going to quote Sarah Thorton quoting Andrea Fraser on page 376 of "33 Artists in 3 Acts."

' "Artists are not part of the solution," she says firmly. "We are part of the problem." What is the problem? I ask. "Give me a minute," she says..."Whether we are talking about cultural capital or economic capital," she says..."art benefits from inequality and the increasingly unequal distribution of social power and privilege. The avant-garde has been trying to escape its own privilege for the last hundred years, but the art world is increasingly a winner-take-all market." She stops and shakes her head. She feels that we are at "the beginning of a new epoch," citing the enormous expansion of the art market as well as art schools and museums that cater to the public's demand for spectacle as much as scholarship. "These things make all the contradictions of being an artist much more intense," she explains."'

- excerpt from Sarah Thorton's book "33 Artists in 3 Acts" page 376

From my perspective working day in and out for the last however many years, witnessing first hand the game that is the art world can be very difficult to stomach. Fraser sums up the challenges I see with art and the physical spaces that contain it being elitist, esoteric and exclusive. Part of my goal as an artist and professor is simply to demystify the entire experience of art and the art world, as much as that impenetrable bubble may be what makes the whole thing seem so valuable to those who collect and endorse it. Despite that, the increasing cost of art school and the privilege of entering those spaces is disheartening. Fraser herself teaches at UCLA, the top art school in the US (labeled by something somewhere.) Tuition at UCLA are posted below directly from their website. 

Food for thought.

Olivia Laing | Author

"People make art ...as a way of expressing their need for contact, or their fear of it. "

-Olivia Laing in The Lonely City

I don't know exactly why I put The Lonely City: Adventures in the Art of Being Alone on my Amazon wish list. Perhaps it was just the title that reminded me what it felt like to live in London and New York. I had no idea I was about to read an excellent book not just about loneliness, but about art and art history in NYC. Laing brilliantly ties together themes of loneliness within her own experience and the experience of some of our greatest artists. Through that she penetrated what I have felt of loneliness in myself and what is often commented on in my work, and I'm sure so many others can relate to this. 

She ends by saying:

"There are so many things art can't do. It can't bring the dead back to life, it can't mend arguments between friends, or cure AIDS, or halt the pace of climate change. All the same, it does have some extraordinary functions, some odd negotiating ability between people, including people who never meet and yet who infiltrate and enrich each other's lives. It does have a way of healing wounds, and better yet of making it apparent that not all wounds need healing and not all scars are ugly. 

If I sound adamant it is because I am speaking from personal experience. When I came to New York I was in pieces, and though it sounds perverse, the way I recovered a sense of wholeness was not by meeting someone or by falling in love, but rather by handling the things that other people had made, slowly absorbing by way of this contact the fact that loneliness, longing, does not mean one has failed, but simply one is alive.

There is a gentrification happening to cities, and there is a gentrification that is happening to the emotions too, with a similarly homogenizing, whitening, deadening effect. Amidst the glossiness of late capitalism, we are fed the notion that all difficult feelings- depression, anxiety, loneliness, rage- are simply a consequence of unsettled chemistry, a problem to be fixed, rather than a response to structural injustice or, on the other hand, to the native texture of embodiment, of doing time, as David Wojnarowicz memorably put it, in a rented body, with all the attendant grief and frustration that entails.

I don't believe the cure for loneliness is meeting someone, not necessarily. I think it's about two things: learning how to befriend yourself and understanding that many of the things that seem to afflict us as individuals are in fact a result of larger forces of stigma and exclusion, which can and should be resisted. 

Loneliness is personal, and it is also political. Loneliness is collective; it is a city. As to how to inhabit it, there are no rules and nor is there any need to feel shame, only to remember that the pursuit of individual happiness does not trump or excuse our obligations to each another. We are in this together, this accumulation of scars, this world of objects, this physical and temporary heaven that so often takes on the countenance of hell. What matters is kindness; what matters is solidarity. What matters is staying alert, staying open, because if we know anything from what has gone before us, it is that the time for feeling will not last."

Cedric Bernadotte | Artist

I love when google searches lead to inspiration. I recently came across the work of Cedric Bernadotte when looking for materials for a public art exhibition we're planning for the campus of Winston-Salem State University.

Bernadotte creates large scale interventions in public spaces from materials like scotch tape and cellophane that envelope existing objects, from benches to bike racks, transforming them into other worldly creations of stretched plastic. He hopes the work will catch passersby in their daily flux, inviting them to stop and re imagine urban spaces. By covering forms in ways that enhance their existing shapes, his work "makes it possible to discover the architecture"* and to consider its possibilities and place in culture more deeply. 

You can see more of his work on his website at http://cedricbernadotte.com/

*from the artists website

ALL images below Copyright artist Cedric Bernadotte/ reblogged or reposted here on my blog from the internet google image search simply to share this artists work to a wider audience 

Mary Sibande | Artist

So my current fascination is with the South African artist Mary Sibande. It started when I discovered her sculpture "Wish You Were Here." (below)

  Mary Sibande, "Wish You Where Here," year unknown. Copyright the artist/ reblogged here from  here  . Posted to help share the artist's work.

 Mary Sibande, "Wish You Where Here," year unknown. Copyright the artist/ reblogged here from here . Posted to help share the artist's work.

In lieu of the protests and riots in Charlotte, NC, which is about an hour from where I live now, among other reactions and thoughts, I started thinking about art and protest. I wondered how artists have addressed the act of protest, in the past and present. At a recent lecture I attended the professor said "art creates a collective memory," which really resonated with me and made me very curious to look at art made by many different artists during a specific time. I wanted to see what kind of narrative disparate artworks may tell us about a movement, or even whether or not art could simply capture the zeitgeist. I thought specifically about looking at the civil rights movement, and then began to look at apartheid as well. I was curious how different national artists, through their unique vision and cultures, addressed these two monumental race struggles.

In my internet searching, I have derailed on Mary Sibande and her character "Sophie" who is the woman depicted in her sculptures. Sophie is this kind of alter ego character who, while dressed in this garish, prohibitive Victorian style maid's uniform, embarks on these epic fantasies. Through Sophie, Sibande is exploring female identity by examining the role of women in contemporary society, notions of beauty, power struggles, and race.

Sibande doesn't appear to have a website, so I just googled her. There are lots of articles, like this one.

 Mary Sibande, "I'm A Lady" Year unknown. Copyright the artist/ reblogged here from  here  . Posted to help share the artist's work.

Mary Sibande, "I'm A Lady" Year unknown. Copyright the artist/ reblogged here from here . Posted to help share the artist's work.

National Geographic Yourshot Story | Hair

I submitted a few photographs to National Geographic's "yourshot" online community and one of my pictures was selected for the final story on "Hair." Your shot is a really neat platform that I've enjoyed participating in. It allows me to engage within this massive international community of photographers. I enjoyed looking at so many amazing pictures. It really made me think about the way hair is so intimately tied to our identities, religions, power, vulnerability, creativity commonality and character. The story is published below:

http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/stories/hair/

 Rose Wind Jerome,  Baptiste, Gold Coast, Australia,  2015

Rose Wind Jerome, Baptiste, Gold Coast, Australia, 2015

Gordon Parks | Photographer

If you're anywhere near Durham, NC, I'd recommend going to the Nasher Museum of Art to see "Southern Accent: Seeking the American South in Contemporary Art."  (On view through Jan. 8) 

The show features over 60 artists, some still living. I left thinking about one of America's great photographers, Gordon Parks. His photographs of the Jim Crow era are some of the best documents made during that time. The image below was one of three featured at the Nasher. 

More about the life and work of Gordon Parks at The Gordon Parks Foundation website.

  Outside Looking In, Mobile, Alabama, 1956. Photograph 37.008 by Gordon Parks. Copyright Gordon Parks. This image is reposted on a blog from  here.

Outside Looking In, Mobile, Alabama, 1956. Photograph 37.008 by Gordon Parks. Copyright Gordon Parks. This image is reposted on a blog from here.

Wayne Lawrence | Portrait Photographer

In the wake of the shootings at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL on June 12, 2016, National Geographic sent photographer Wayne Lawrence to photograph for a story they ran on June 24. (full story here: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/06/orlando-shooting-lgbt-portraits/

I was immediately struck by the portraits Lawrence made. In a world where we are completely inundated with photography, he has a strong, unique voice which beautifully captured the dignity and humanity of the friends and survivors in Orlando. For more of his work visit his website: http://waynelawrenceonline.com

Copyright Wayne Lawrence