Saturday, June 6, 2015

SAQA Structures Show, Part 1

Last night I attended the opening reception for our SAQA region's juried show. The theme for the show is Structures and consists of 24 pieces by 19 artists. There were quite a few people at the reception and they seemed to enjoy the artwork. I learned a lot. There is nothing like seeing things on a white wall and well lit. Those circumstances draw attention to lots of decisions which need to come together to make an effective statement. Missing the mark on just one of those decisions can make a big difference to the end effect. 

I will write more about how I perceived the reactions to at least one of my two pieces. But first I will show complete images. Here is a full length and detail shots of Photo 51. It is 42" tall by 30" wide and is wrapped around wooden stretchers which means that it sits almost two inches off the wall.

My artist statement says it all. 

Photo 51 
This is a story of both social and physical structures. In 1951 English chemist Rosalind Franklin took a position as an X-ray crystallographer at King's College, London. The university establishment did not welcome women and her male peers were openly dismissive of her expertise and experience. An X-ray photo that she generated was removed from her lab without her permission and was ultimately used to confirm the molecular structure of DNA. RosalindFranklin did not share in the Nobel Prize for the discovery. Contemporary quotes are fromVittorio Luzzati, James Watson and Rosalind Franklin (l to r).

The quotes at the bottom of each panel read as follows:

Left: They had a common room which was forbidden to women . . . It was not the kind of life you would like to have anywhere.

Center: Clearly Rosy had to go or be put in her place. The thought could not be avoided that the best home for a feminist was in another person's lab.

Right: Conclusion: Big helix in several chains, phosphates on outside. . . . Phosphate links available to proteins.

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