Tuesday, March 18, 2008

the live creature

a week ago, i finally saw the 31 under 31 show at 3rd Ward (after trying to get in twice on opening night, with lines around the chilly block both times! must've been a crazy party in there.).

it was a cool show in a cool space (and Manya Fox's huge print looked especially awesome). one photographer whose work i had never seen before was Tealia Ellis Ritter, and i thought her portrait in the show, though a simple headshot, really stood out.

Ritter's latest project is called "The Live Creature" and the title of each photograph seems to describe the subject's "dream."

i believe the quote "The Live Creature" is from the title of an essay by John Dewey. without an artist's statement, we will just have to look to Dewey for the link between the project's title and the subject's dreams... in Art as Experience, Dewey wrote:

"I do not think it can be denied that an element of reverie, of approach to a state of dream, enters into the creation of a work of art, nor that the experience of the work when it is intense often throws one into a similar state."

hmm. i'm always interested in photographers who approach their work in a very textual and intellectual way. i especially question whether those things come across in the actual visual work. i don't know the answer.

but i thought the top image, above, was really stunning (despite the fact that i personally found the title "My dream is to realize who I truly am," a bit cringe-worthy).

the second image above is the one that was on the wall in 31 under 31: "My dream is to be an artist." go check it out (heck, buy it) at the gallery if you can—the print looked great.

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