Art Gallery hosts photography talk, exhibition

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Photo Credit/Hannah Demchak
Photo Credit/Hannah Demchak

Staff Writer

Photographers have the ability to capture moments with the click of a finger. These photographs often have a deeper meaning behind them.

Rachel Herman, Daniel McInnis, and Rebecca Nolan had the privilege of showing the students, faculty and other South Bend residents some snapshots of the world through their very own lenses.

An art exhibition and talk took place in the Education and Arts building on campus on Jan. 14, 2016 from 4:30-7:00 p.m. to showcase the work of these three photographers.

Each photographer brought something different to the table, but the themes of each meshed together in a unique way by connecting people to their environment.

In Herman’s photographs, the focus is placed mainly on the individuals in the picture, whereas Nolan’s work focused on natural scenery and landscape.

McInnis used a combination of the two, portrait and landscape, for his photos, which consisted primarily of people in the New York area dressed brightly with colorful backdrops.

Art Gallery curator Josh Miller organized the event after McInnis submitted his portfolio to be shown in the gallery. Miller opted to use him as part of a three-person show along with Herman and Nolan.

McInnis talked about his different influences for his work, “Presence,” including Rineke Dijkstra, a woman from the Netherlands who took a series of full body portraits of people on the beach during the 90s and August Sander, a photographer who took thousands of photographs of people in Germany during World War II.

“Sanders attempted to take thousands of photographs of people in Germany, of different kinds of people, not just wealthy people or artists, but people from all social strata showing the diversity of the people in Germany. He also had a really kind approach to his subjects by showing them as human beings, and I have always admired that,” said McInnis.

Kendall Asbell, a student at IUSB, said, “I liked that Daniel took a lot of these photos in New York; I really like street photography, so I like the concept that he has of catching people in their element.”

Rachel Herman took a different approach when creating her photo series “The Imp of Love”. This sequence of photographs captures intimate moments between couples that were still connected in one way or another, but no longer romantically involved.

Andrea Herrick, an IUSB student said, “I don’t know much about photography, but I am hoping to learn a little bit tonight. The subject matter of Herman’s work is compelling. You can’t tell if the couples photographed are in love or not.”

One of Herman’s influences for her work was Harry Callahan, an American photographer who photographed portraits of his wife over the course of 40 years. She enjoys the concept of “photographing the un-photographable.”

“Photography can be used to reveal that which cannot be seen with the naked eye, and some of those things are more metaphysical. I have long been drawn to the emotional or psychological resonances and intrigued with how photography gives us the ability to look at a situation for a lot longer than would be comfortable in real life,” said Herman.

Nolan’s photography is on the opposite side of the spectrum compared to Herman’s work. Most of her pictures included in the portfolio depicted rural communities and scenery throughout numerous states in the south. Nolan was unable to attend the gallery talk.

“Rebecca Nolan made some very interesting scenery. She used really interesting techniques and made the mundane look interesting,” said Kristina Partridge, a student at IUSB.

Many other events take place in the gallery throughout the year with a new show rotating every 5-6 weeks on average. The gallery caters to many other kinds of artwork besides photography such as sculpture and new media.

The next gallery opening will begin on February 15 and will run through March 19. This exhibition will feature a ceramics and painting collection.

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