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Dream Sequence + New Acquisitions

Dennis Darling, Untitled


The Wittliff Gallery of Southwestern and Mexican Photography opened two new exhibitions, Dream Sequence: Four Photographers and New Acquisitions. Dream Sequence: Four Photographers is comprised of works by Kate Breakey, Keith Carter, Gracela Iturbide and Rocky Schenck. These images reveal how photography draws narrative and lyrical strength from its capacity to transfigure landscapes or life forms.

In its early stages, photography freed painting from its bond to likeness. Today, many photographers have returned to questions originally raised by the arrival of the medium, and to painterly answers in response. One purpose of this exhibition is to highlight images that form part of the permanent holdings at the Wittliff Gallery of Southwestern & Mexican Photography. While presenting the scope and diversity of the collection, another aim of this exhibit is to examine an important aspect of contemporary photography: that is, its dual role as mediated document and deliberate image-making.

In Dream Sequence, works by Kate Breakey, Keith Carter, Graciela Iturbide and Rocky Schenck show us how photography draws narrative and lyrical strength from its capacity to transfigure landscapes or life forms. Natural spaces, buildings, humans, animals and ordinary objects are made strange and inscrutable. Details recede. . .or swell into the foreground, flooding the pictures with ambiguity. To this end, surface effects play an important role--the blur of the lens, or of a subject in motion: color pigments layered on a black and white print: even textures of paper and ink as they define the topography of photogravure. Together, these elements conspire to produce the open meanings communicated by these symbols depicted here. Even as they seem to defy interpretation, these images literallly rise from their surfaces to reveal the shapes always looming over the horizon of private and collective dreams.

New Acquisitions features the work of Henri Cartier-Bresson, Sebastião Salgado, Richard Misrach, Debbie Flemming Caffrey, Earlie Hudnall, Yolanda Andrade, Dennis Darling, O. Rufus Lovett, Maya Goded, Will van Overbeek and Gerardo Suter. Rich in scope and diversity, these photographic images form a vital and exciting part of the visual culture encompassed by Mexico and the Southwest.

Exhibit curated by Roberto Tejada.