Rita K. Hillman Gallery, International Center of Photography,
1114 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036
Apr 6 – 12, 2019
Curated by ICP-Bard MFA graduates 2019
“Our experiences make us, both as individuals and communities. In making art, we make those experiences particular; we work to find the right combination of event, instrument, and context to give form to the formless nature of daily experience.
Photography has always existed in an uneasy space between the unique and the generic. It is founded on the capturing of unique moments, but much of its reception has been conditioned by the extent to which it makes use of genres adopted from other forms: from painting, drawing, or theater. Examining the history of photography is in part a tracking of the ways in which it as a medium grew into the uniqueness of its own language. In doing so it has become the most widely adopted mode of recording individual lives in human history.
Today photography is everywhere, on our persons, our buildings, our homes. But a strange inversion has occurred, one where the dictates of genre once again overwhelm the particularities of experience. Online, photography asserts that our individual lives have value only to the extent that they resemble ideals forged in some other phantasmical universe, and encourages us to broadcast our adherence to these norms.
The artists in this exhibition, titled No Simple Seasons, are standing against this through a variety of means, bringing the particularities of experience back to the center of their work, or demonstrating the ways in which pictorial genre functions as a historical trap. They allow for the interactions around the things they make to be quirky and personal, or unsettling and transformative. Their work is emotionally rich and visually varied. And in seeking the particulars beyond convention they give form both to particular legacies of pain and the stirrings of community that spring from sharing those legacies.”
Chair, ICP-Bard MFA