When my friends at Red Door Gallery in Oakland asked me to participate in their July, 2009 show, Shedding, I immediately accepted. Transition and transcendence have always been themes in my photomontage series, Desolation's Comfort. Whenever I'm asked to participate in a themed show, I try to go with the first impressions my imagination brings to me. In the this case, I had in my mind's eye the image of a giant snakeskin having be shed and blowing in the wind. Movement and scale are elements that I've always wanted to play with and incorporate in my prints. I therefore set out to create large banners to be hung from the rafters of the gallery.
Most people have an uneasiness when they look at old photos of themselves, as if they were peering into an uncomfortable past. You can see the reaction whenever you bring out old photo albums. It is said that we shed all the cells in our body every seven years, and if that is true, we are actually looking at other physical beings when looking at the old photos of ourselves. Maybe that explains part of the reaction to old images. In these two new prints, I juxtaposed young and old versions of the same person—one looking at the other—as a way to portray this concept. The result is, I think, the kind of dream we have when we encounter ourselves in a different plane of space and time. Which version is the real us, the young, the old, the in-between? I doubt that there is an answer.
The prints debuted last evening, July 3rd, and are 24" wide by 80" tall. They are on display at:
Red Door Gallery and Collective
416 26th Street
Oakland, CA 94612-2411
The show is curated by my talented friends and fellow artists, Yasmin Lambie-Simpson and Kimberley Campisano. Their Shedding installation is worth a special trip as is the entire exhibit. If you are in the area please pay them a visit.