Monday, January 30, 2017

The Southern Gallery Opens Two Photography Shows in Charleston

The Southern Gallery, which has been open at 2 Carlson Court, in Charleston, for just over a year, is my kind of gallery.

Erin and Justin Nathanson have found a generous, infinitely flexible space between Meeting and King Streets, near the intersection between I-26 and US-17, and created a gallery they describe as a "contemporary art gallery dealing in recent works by artists connected to the American South."

Here is more about The Southern Gallery from Charleston's City Paper, celebrating the gallery's opening last January.

Displaying Southern photography been part of the Southern Gallery's mission since that opening show, which included work by Charleston-based photographer Gately Williams.

Now, they've really gotten into it, opening two photography shows this past weekend, Paradise Road and Paradise Out-Front

Go here for a review of these shows from Scott Ellingburg, in the Post and Courier, the local Charleston newspaper.

One is a solo show dedicated to the work of Eliot Dudik (see images above and below), featuring work from his new portfolio Paradise Road

This is a concept project. Dudik says he wanted to “drive to paradise and see what was there." 

Dudik got the idea that he could "take the temperature of the country” by photographing along roads to paradise in the USA, that is, roads named Paradise Road. 

Dudik has found 196 of these; to date, he has photographed over 90, and is still working on the project.

His show at The Southern Gallery includes 12 of theses images, and you can see them all if you go here.

The other show is a group show of work by folks chosen by Dudik to complement the work in his solo show.

This show is called Paradise Out Front, and includes work by the following photographers from the South:

Durham, NC-based Ben Alper (see image above), Charlottesville-based Matt Eich (see image below), Birmingham-based Jared Ragland, Richmond, VA-based Justin James Reed (see image three images down), Houston-based Bryan Schutmaat, Honorary Southern Photographer Aline Smithson, Austin, TX-based Katherine Squier, and Richmond, VA-based Susan Worsham (see image two down).

(And apologies to everyone whose work I haven't included. Some of your work was easier to find in reproducible files than others.)

There is also work in this show by Ian van Coller, Mark Dorf, Thalassa Raasch, and Anastasia Samoylova, but they are Not From Around Here, so to see their work in the show, and to learn more about them, please go here.

In fact, to see ALL the work in this show, please go here.

All these photographs are up at The Southern until February 26th, 2017.  

My advice is to rush right to Charleston and check out The Southern, and this fine show. 

Congratulations to the Nathansons for their vision, energy, and creativity in establishing The Southern Gallery and for including photography among their definitions of Southern art. 

This is a great show, a great chapter in the history of photography exhibitions at The Southern, and, I hope, a great sign of more to come. 

And, thanks, too, for welcoming me to The Southern very late on a Saturday afternoon. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Lucinda Devlin at the Weatherspoon Art Museum

Distinguished American Photographer Lucinda Devlin (see image above) has become a Distinguished Southern Photographer in recent years, moving first to Hattesburg, MS, and now to Greensboro, NC.

We can get to know our new colleague's work at Sightlines, a major retrospective exhibition of her work, opening at Greensboro's Weatherspoon Art Museum, on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

This show opens on January 28th, 2017 and up through April 23rd, 2017, in the The Bob + Lissa Shelley McDowell Gallery.

The folks at the Weatherspoon Museum say this of Devlin and her work:

"Lucinda Devlin's photographs serve as social commentaries on timely and socially relevant issues such as personal rights, the death penalty, and agribusiness. 

"An internationally recognized American photographer who now lives in Greensboro, Devlin began her career in the 1970s during the genesis of color photography in America. 

"At the time, she took up not only color photography, but also the artistic approach that she continues to this day, one that emphasizes an objective or neutral point of view. 

"Devlin also discovered her preferred subject matter: psychologically charged spaces absent of any human figures yet nonetheless signaling contemporary public and private life. 

"Her earliest series, Pleasure Ground, featured droll images of thematic hotel rooms. 

"Subsequent series (Habitats, Subterranea, Corporal Arenas, Field Culture, and Lake Pictures) have continued to probe the meaning of place at such sites as zoos and amusement parks, tanning salons and health spas, hospitals and funeral homes, agricultural facilities and open fields, and lastly, Lake Huron's shoreline. 

"Her most provocative and best known series, The Omega Suites (so named after the final letter of the Greek alphabet), proffered emotive images of sterile execution chambers and the apparatuses associated with them."

Devlin has exhibited widely and published widely, and has images in the collections of museums and private collectors across Europe and the United States. 

You can learn more about her work if you go here and watch the video of an interview with her. 

We welcome her to the ranks of Southern Photographers and look forward to seeing her work at the Weatherspoon in Greensboro later this month.