"Horseshoe Lake" by Matt O'Shea
F-stop, film speed, light meter, focus, exposure: to most they define photography, the very tools used to create an image with a camera. But not to Christa Denney, associate instructor of photography. She believes that photography transcends the physical tools of its making; it’s more about the resulting vision. As curator of the “New Ways of Seeing” exhibit, she chose to feature artists who illustrate that philosophy. The show is now open in the Morton J. May Foundation Gallery and runs until Nov. 14.
Denney will give a curator’s talk at 2:15 pm on Oct. 27. She plans to give a tour of the gallery, focusing on each artist’s work and how it represents the theme.
“I was asked to show that photography is more than Ansel Adams; that they don’t go out on donkeys and photograph landscapes anymore,” Denney said. “The show is about the contemporary state of photography right now. I chose artists that use photography as a tool to express their vision.”
Photography, Denney said, offers us a glimpse into history.
“The thing that fascinates me is that something has to exist in order to be photographed, but how you think or feel can change how the object looks. Photography is a way of understanding the emotional part of history; how something was perceived at the time it was photographed. It changes the way we see things.”
Denney said she drew her inspiration for the show from a book.
“The name of the show comes from a book from the 70s written by John Berger,” she said. “In it, he talks about art as a way of seeing, not a way of making or interpreting. How it’s made is less of an issue than that it was made.”
The show will include well-know artists Michael Eastman, Janice Nesser-Chu, Matthew O’Shea and Luanne Rimel, and will also feature several of Denney’s former students, including Rebecca Orf, Elaine Rickles and Mary Ellen Schwab.
“There’s a mixture of artists in the show. Some are internationally known, but I also have three former students in the show. One has just started out and the other two are currently in education. Seeing what people learned in school, and how they applied it in the future, is interesting. It’s nice to see emerging artists and those already established at the same time.”
Article by Sarah Kidwell, sophomore, graphic design