Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

July 29, 2008

Kansas City – Missed opportunity

Filed under: Photography — Doug Stockdale @ 2:14 pm

While in Independence and Blue Springs, Missouri over the weekend, I missed the opportunity to go see the photographery exhibit at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, called Human/Nature: Recent European Landscape Photography. It received a nice write up in the Kansas City Star newspaper, which whetted the visual appatite.

The release for the exhibit states:

This exhibition features a selection of large-scale color photographs by a new generation of European artists, including Andreas Gefeller, Peter Bialobrzeski, Massimo Vitali, Olaf Otto Becker, Bart Michiels, Jem Southam, and Wout Berger, among others. These artists engage with the contemporary European landscape in varying ways.

For some, the land retains romantic associations, as a source of sublime inspiration. For others, cultural interventions such as the leisure industry and real estate development are paramount concerns. Notions of home, the physical and emotional weight of history, and the power of memory to shape perception of the land also inform these images. Together, these works explore the endlessly complex relationship between nature and the human presence (my emphasis), from harmonious coexistence to contentious exploitation. This exhibition provides the first opportunity to view bold, contemporary works never before seen in this region.

So far,  not much to see on line for this exhibit. I also was very interested is seeing Jem Southam’s work.

What I found interesting is that the Nelson-Atkins curators (Keith Davis and April Watson) had recently acquired some of the exhibited works and then after these purchases, came up with the exhibit title and theme. Then went out and brought in other works to “flesh out the concept”. Refreshing. This provides support to the idea that you don’t have to have your concept nailed down before you start your photographic production. That you can develop a concept, get it figured out, and then continue to further develop your concept. If a big museum can back into a concept, why can’t we??

So if anyone does get a chance to see this exhibit, I would appreciated your thoughts and comments.

Best regards, Doug

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1 Comment »

  1. When I lived in Missouri, KC was a little to far to visit frequently, but when I did, I always made time for the Nelson Atkins. It’s a great museum, and I think there newly renovated and expanded building is now open.

    Comment by matt — July 31, 2008 @ 6:26 pm


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