Please join SF Camerawork on Thursday, October 15th for a live student-led dialogue between photography majors at California College of the Arts in San Francisco, CA and Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA on the issue of voting. The exchange will be structured to explore voting stories as it pertains to the student’s geographical locations, societal and state-sanctioned suppression, family histories and personal experiences.
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Our perception of the American landscape is inevitably informed by events that are said to have taken place on a given site, just as our understanding of history is influenced by the landscape that is its necessary backdrop. Contemporary cinema has come to play an increasingly important role in complicating these associations by shifting the textual representation of history to a Hollywood simulacrum that combines mythology, fiction and entertainment with notions of truth, historical record and the illusion of reality. American Histories is a series of color photographs that explores this progressively complex relationship between landscape, history and film.
Each photograph in the series looks at a specific site that is tied to a particularly significant or disturbing event. These events are culled from history as well as cinema and are comprised of both fact and fiction, or some combination of the two. The accompanying text details the events associated with each place in a manner that invokes reportage and the objective tone of historical analysis. Issues of conflict and violence in our history and culture are prevalent throughout the text but the places that remain are at times quiet, seductive and ignorantly beautiful. By combining film narratives with historical events into a classical, documentary format of text and image, the series addresses photography’s role in the entanglement between media, representation and truth.
Somewhere Along the Line
From 2011 to 2017 I traveled over 100,000 miles by car, focusing my camera on the massive network of superhighways that has become ubiquitous throughout the United States. Whether located within an urban environment or leading out to the last remnants of wilderness, these roadways have been designed to suppress any distinguishing characteristics of place and instead construct a familiar and uniform system of functional spaces built for mobility and productivity. Rather than moving quickly through these spaces however, I have made the decision to slowly and deliberately dwell within them, looking for unforeseen moments of humor, pathos and humanity. My photographs look at the road as a stage where narratives play out and opposing forces often collide. The boundaries that line these landscapes, whether real or imagined, are examined by looking at the separations between public and private space, privilege and need, the individual and the collective, and the countervailing ideas of home and escape. The resulting compilation of photographs depicts the state of America’s infrastructure as a cultural indicator of its economic, social and environmental circumstances.
GSU Photo faculty member Katherine Cunningham has been exploring the intersections of art, science, and the spiritual through her work for more than a decade. Her thoroughly researched projects trace a recurring human desire, almost a need, for simple explanations of complex phenomena. Often these answers are sought through the lens of science, which purports to be rational, or spirituality, which attempts to harness the irrational. Myriad cultures and communities have declared their identities through a shared search for meaning that, inevitably, transforms into belief that they have found conclusive answers. Cunningham investigates these groups with an interest in how they create a lifestyle from these identities, and how they turn their answers into actions.
Candice Greathouse graduated from the GSU photo department in 2012 with a Masters of Fine Arts in Photography. Since then she has been exhibiting throughout Atlanta at prestigious institutions such as the Atlanta Contemporary and The High Museum. Her work has been shown nationally in Miami, FL and Chicago, IL. She has curated shows at Gallery 72, Hambidge Arts Center, and University of Georgia’s galleries.
Her solo exhibition and installation, Ain’t No Party, can be seen at Eyedrum Gallery until the party’s over on February 3rd, 2018.
To read about the show, check out the Burnaway review by E.C. Flamming.
Recent GSU Welch alum Ben Lee was one of two winners of the 2017 Atlanta Photography Group Student Prize for photographic artists in Georgia. Along with the other finalists, he will have work at an exhibition at the APG Gallery from August 24 to September 23. According to BURNAWAY, “APG invited the faculty of all Georgia colleges with a fine art degree program to nominate their top two photography students. A total of 15 students were nominated and submitted examples of their work to a three-member panel of judges, comprising MOCA GA director Annette Cone Skelton, Atlanta Contemporary curator Daniel Fuller, and Gregory Harris, assistant curator of photography at the High Museum of Art.”
For more information on the award, the exhibition, and the other finalists, visit BURNAWAY.