Thursday, March 2, 2017 at noon through Sunday, April 2, 2017 at 5pm
noon through Sunday, April 2 at 5pm
Tara Sellios Testimony Lauren Semivan Observatory March 2–April 2, 2017 First Thursday Opening Reception March 2, 6:00–9:00 PM Artist Talks: Lauren Semivan: Thursday, March 2, 5:00 PM Tara Sellios: Friday, March 3, 12:00 PM All Blue Sky events and programs are free and open to the public. "Death has always possessed a significant presence within the history of art, ranging from altarpieces to the work of the Dutch still life painters. Manifesting melancholic themes with beauty and precision, as these artists did, results in an image that is seductive, forcing the viewer to look, despite its apparent grotesque and morbid nature. Through these images, I aspire to make apparent the restlessness of a life that is knowingly so temporary and vulnerable.” Inspired by Last Judgement paintings of the Baroque era, Tara Sellios’ Testimony is a visual rumination upon the fragility, impermanence, and carnality of life. Her process is meticulous and deliberate, with each tableaux beginning as a detailed watercolor sketch. Sellios then translates each painting into sculpture, carefully placing rehydrated insect specimens and animal skeletons into intriguing configurations that she subsequently photographs with an 8x10 view camera. The resulting larger-than-life color photographic prints, which will be on view alongside selected watercolors, are meant to disrupt preconceived notions of death while also offering a space for contemplating our mortality. Tara Sellios (b. 1987) is an artist living and working in Boston, Massachusetts. She holds a BFA in Photography from The Art Institute of Boston and has exhibited extensively regionally and nationally. Her work has been featured in Photograph magazine, the Boston Globe, and on the Lenscratch photography blog. Blue Sky is honored to host Sellios’ first solo show on the West Coast.
Thursday, March 2, 2017 at noon through Sunday, April 2, 2017 at 9pm
noon through Sunday, April 2 at 9pm
Tara Sellios Testimony Lauren Semivan Observatory March 2–April 2, 2017 First Thursday Opening Reception March 2, 6:00–9:00 PM Artist Talks: Lauren Semivan: Thursday, March 2, 5:00 PM Tara Sellios: Friday, March 3, 12:00 PM All Blue Sky events and programs are free and open to the public. “Within each image, ghosts of previous drawings create a sense of time suspended, evoking gesture, atmosphere and memory. Photographs allow me to access the extraordinary, to keep a record of dreams, and to employ the unforeseen.” To create the large format black-and-white photographs that comprise Observatory, Lauren Semivan brings together the visual languages of drawing, still life painting, and performance to express her dreamlike interior narratives on film. Using charcoal and graphite, Semivan makes gestural marks on large backdrops, setting the emotional tone for each image and leaving traces of her presence. When Semivan does appear in the front of her 8x10 view camera, she often seems caught in a dance, her identity obscured within the image’s painterly abstraction. Strategically placed objects also populate the staged environment, adding additional layers for the eye to peruse and inviting us into the depths of the artist’s inner world. Lauren Semivan (b. 1981) is an artist living and working in Detroit, Michigan. She received a BA in studio art from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin, and an MFA in photography from Cranbrook Academy of Art. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at many galleries and museums and she has taught photography at the College for Creative Studies, The Ohio State University, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Wayne State University. Semivan has received numerous awards for her work including Photolucida Critical Mass Top 50 and The Griffin Museum of Photography’s Griffin Award. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker, Artforum, and Photograph magazines and is part of the permanent collections at the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Cranbrook Art Museum, The Wriston Art Galleries at Lawrence University, and The Elton John Collection. She is represented by Benrubi Gallery in New York, and David Klein Gallery in Detroit, Michigan.
Friday, March 25, 2016 at 2pm
2015 Critical Mass Solo Show Award Amanda Harman Garden Stories, Hidden Labours Amanda Harman first experienced the gardens of Tyntesfield, a country house and estate in Bristol that is now part of England’s National Trust, as a volunteer working in the cut flower garden. After spending a year assisting with maintaining the grounds, Harman returned with her camera to tell the story of this historic site. Although decidedly understated in tone, the artist's large color prints masterfully reveal the wondrous microcosms of the greenhouses and outbuildings, whose orderly forms would cease to exist without the many dedicated hours of toil behind-the-scenes. “By uncovering the small signs of the day to day—the tending of plants, their protection from insects, disease and weather; the nurturing of seedlings and tender plants in the glasshouses, the harvesting, drying and storing of crops, and the gathering of flowers to be arranged and placed in the house—these observations seek to embody the gardener’s labours and to reveal the unseen stories of the gardens, and those who tend them.” Garden Stories is the 2015 Critical Mass Solo Exhibition Award presented in collaboration with Photolucida. Amanda Harman is a photographer based in Bristol, UK. She studied photography at West Surrey College of Art and Design and London College of Communication and has worked on a range of commissions, residencies, and projects for galleries, museums, charities, and commercial clients since 1985. Harman's work has been exhibited widely in the UK and in Europe, and is held in a number of collections, including the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the National Media Museum in Bradford. She was selected for Portrait Salon 13 and won the Professional Still Life Category of the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards, in addition to being included in the Critical Mass Top 50 in 2015. She currently is an Associate Lecturer in Photography at the University of the West of England. First Thursday Opening Reception April 7, 6:00–9:00 PM Artist Talks: Peter B. Leighton: Thursday, April 7, 5:00 PM Amanda Harman: Saturday, April 9, 3:00 PM
Wednesday, January 7, 2015 at noon through Sunday, February 1, 2015 at 2pm
noon through Sunday, February 1 at 2pm
In his series, Inshallah, which means “God-willing” in Arabic, photographer Dima Gavrysh explores the repercussions of the Soviet and American occupations of Afghanistan. The visually stunning black-and-white images that make up this body of work were all captured while the photographer was embedded in the US army. Each print emits a haunting, dream-like quality that highlights the contradictions inherent to war, a condition often suffused with an idealized patriotism that frequently belies the real violence and devastation faced by the civilians and soldiers on the ground. “I create a dark fairytale filled with my fears and dreams, based on my fascination with the army’s strength and order, set on the front lines of what has become America’s longest running war in history. Mesmerized by the complexity of the Afghan chaos, I strive to better comprehend my personal relationship to these wars: two empires, two mentalities, same battlefield, twelve years apart.”