I conjunction with the exhibit, “Indirect Objects: Captured Identities” I'll be lecturing at Parkland College in Champaign Illinois, on March 17th.
“Indirect Objects: Captured Identities” includes four artists from around the country: Stafford Hiroshi Smith (Lewisburg, Penn.), Judith Sol-Dyess (Chicago), Liz Murphy Thomas (Springfield, Ill.), and Vaughn Wascovich (Commerce, Tex.). Inherent in their works is the process of documenting how we choose to identify ourselves through clothes, environment, and the architecture that we inhabit. These photographers seem linked both by an interest in using the camera to capture ‘constructed identities’ we attribute to our character and by being able to interpret social culture in a variety of environments.
Artists in this exhibit also take a contemporary approach to photography, working with issues in their own time frame to engage the world in which they live. Smith’s photos depict interpersonal relationships within a family; his latest work reveals an examination of American families and seeks to redefine the family portrait. Wascovich focuses on the physical landscape of higher education. The academic environment is a place for searching for knowledge unhampered by commercial responsibility and full of opportunity. His photographing of these locations without the students and faculty gives the viewer pause: The emptiness and captured light augment a subtle beauty and hopefulness.