Thanks to all who joined us for Vernissage! We had an excellent opening night catching up with friends old and new. If you have not yet made it to Navy Pier, be sure to visit Expo Chicago through Sunday and see us at booth 167.
We are debuting never-before-seen work by some of our featured artists, as well as new bodies of work by our represented artists. Read on to learn more about Jess T. Dugan, Terry Evans, Garrett O Hansen, Michael Koerner, and Laurent Millet!
Jess T. Dugan
Jess T. Dugan is an artist whose work explores issues of gender, sexuality, identity, and community. Jess earned an MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago (2014), a Master of Liberal Arts in Museum Studies from Harvard University (2010), and a BFA in Photography from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design (2007).
Dugan has exhibited at venues including the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, the Aperture Foundation, the Museum of Contemporary Photography, the San Diego Museum of Art, the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College, the Transformer Station, the Griffin Museum of Photography, and at many colleges and universities throughout the United States.
Public collections include the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Museum of Contemporary Photography, the Harvard Art Museums, the Birmingham Museum of Art, the Grand Rapids Art Museum, the Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University, the Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins College, Fidelity Investments, JP Morgan Chase, and the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction.
Representations of older transgender people are nearly absent from our culture and those that do exist are often one-dimensional. For over five years, photographer Jess T. Dugan and social worker Vanessa Fabbre traveled throughout the United States creating To Survive on This Shore: Photographs and Interviews with Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Older Adults. Seeking subjects whose lived experiences exist within the complex intersections of gender identity, age, race, ethnicity, sexuality, socioeconomic class, and geographic location, they traveled from coast to coast, to big cities and small towns, documenting the life stories of this important but largely underrepresented group of older adults. The featured individuals share a wide variety of life narratives spanning the last ninety years, offering an important historical record of transgender experience and activism in the United States. The resulting portraits and narratives offer a nuanced view into the struggles and joys of growing older as a transgender person and offer a poignant reflection on what it means to live authentically despite seemingly insurmountable odds.
Terry Evans was born in the heart of the American prairie, Kansas City, Missouri, spending most of her adult life in Salina before moving to Chicago. It is in Kansas, among the hay bales, grain silos and cultivated fields, that Terry’s passion for the great plains was born – a passion that has led her on a photographic journey spanning more than twenty years and countless hours 600 feet above the ground in a single-engine plane.
Terry Evans’ work is part of numerous private and public collections including The Art Institute of Chicago, The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, NY), Los Angeles County Museum of Art and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. She has three monographs produced on her work: Disarming The Prairie(Johns Hopkins Press, 1998), The Inhabited Prairie (University Press of Kansas, 1998), and Prairie: Images of Ground and Sky (University Press of Kansas, 1996).
“Since 1978, all of my work is connected by an abiding interest in and love for prairie. This interest began more than forty years ago when I photographed the Fent prairie, an 80 acre virgin prairie near Salina, Kansas, where I lived. I explored Fent and other prairies for the next eight years, which introduced me to the wondrous balance of an undisturbed ecosystem, and has informed all of my work to date. In Ancient Prairies, I’m visiting prairie remnants once again. In late May, I went back to the Fent prairie to photograph its intricate botanical complexity after having photographed the effects of fracking in North Dakota and petcoke pollution in Southeast Chicago, which both showed human disregard for land and its people. I’m deeply disturbed by our seeming inability to confront the current and impending disasters of our intensive fossil fuel overuse and the climate change our lives are provoking. This work is about remembering the wisdom and beauty of intact prairies. It is about SEEING them. These prairies would not exist without human care, and Ancient Prairies serves as a tribute to the kinship between humans and nature.”
Garrett O. Hansen
Garrett graduated from Grinnell College, where he studied economics and political science. He completed his MFA in photography at Indiana University and has taught at several universities in the United States and in Asia; he is now an Assistant Professor of Photography at the University of Kentucky. Garrett has had numerous solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Europe, Indonesia, and Japan.
“Guns are one of the most lethal ways of attempting suicide, with roughly 90% of suicide attempts leading to death. They are also the most common method of suicide in America, with just over 50% of all suicides involving a gun. My newest body of work, entitled Loss, considers these statistics and addresses the fact that over 22,000 people a year are ending their lives with a gun.
Comprised of  2 x 4 foot panels, one for each month of the year, this large-scale piece acknowledges the devastating toll guns are taking on our communities. While high profile celebrity suicides garner significant media attention, very little media attention is given to average Americans who take their own lives. There are good arguments for this journalistic practice, in terms of the privacy for the friends and family of the deceased, as well as a desire to avoid “copycat” suicides. The drawback, however, is that thoughtful and informed conversations about suicide, and the strong correlation between gun ownership and suicide by gun, is not part of the national conversation. This series directly addresses this issue and asks viewers to acknowledge the magnitude of the problem.
The patterning on each panel is based on dove shot spray patterns fired from a 12-gauge shotgun. These patterns are then photographed and reproduced using a laser cutter. Each hole represents a single suicide in which a gun was used.”
Michael Koerner (Okinawa, Japan, 1963) is the oldest of five brothers. Due to genetic abnormalities and cancer, he is the only remaining living son. His brothers’ fates (and potentially his own one day) can be linked to their mother, who was eleven years old on August 9, 1945 when the atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. She lived in Sasebo, Japan, 45 miles away from the blast. The long-term effects of severe, acute exposure to gamma radiation led to his mother’s death at an early age, and all of his brothers. Koerner’s work explores his family history and genetics through small tintypes, using photographic chemistry to assimilate the bursts and biochemical fallout from the atom bomb.
“I am the oldest of five brothers. The next born son of my parents lived for only several days. The next son was stillborn and the next was miscarried late in the third trimester. The cause of each of these tragedies was traced to genetic abnormalities. My youngest brother, Richard, eventually succumbed to complications associated with two separate bouts of lymphatic cancer. He lived until he was 32 years of age.
There is a tremendous amount of pain and guilt associated with these horrendous endings. It is almost impossible to eliminate or even subdue the feelings that something could have been done differently or avoided. Unfortunately, these feelings are amplified in my family. My mother, Kimiko Takaki, was eleven years old on August 9th, 1945 and living in Sasebo, Japan, which is about 45 miles away from the atomic bomb blast in Nagasaki that fateful day. About half of the 80 thousand deaths from the attack on Nagasaki occurred in the first day, while the other half of the deaths occurred from radiation sickness and burns in the following few months. Realistically, the ultimate death toll is at least ten times higher when you approximate the longterm effects of severe, acute exposure to gamma radiation. My mother and each of her four siblings died of rare genetic disorders and/or cancer at ages much younger than the median life expectancy.
I remain hyper-vigilant towards my own cancer diagnosis and exhibit my own feelings of survivor’s guilt. These feelings and family history and experiences drive my artistic hand.”
For more than twenty years, Laurent Millet has channeled his innate curiosity to create photographs that question the way objects appear within space and time. Citing R. Buckminster Fuller and Denis Diderot among his influences, Millet creates an artistic vocabulary through metal wire, vineyard posts and barrel hoops – objects prevalent in the coastal town of France in which he resides. There is a rich history of artists constructing environments simply to be photographed and then disassembled. These created realities were prevalent in the 1980s, as works by Sandy Skoglund, Bernard Faucon, Bruce Charlesworth, James Welling and other artists burst onto the scene. All of these artists worked with objects to create a narrative, captured by the camera. Laurent Millet (b. 1968 France) continues to work in this tradition, using various 19th c. printing techniques to magnify his vision.
As he stated in a 2014 interview in L’Oeil de la Photographie: “I felt like I had to take refuge in something that was comforting and reassuring… This idea brought me back to what I did as a child in the countryside when I would play with wood and stones. I rediscovered that pleasure as an adult… Starting with the first things I built, fishing machines, I felt like a world was opening up in which I could really exist. These objects are powered by my personal fictions, my dream of another life. The photograph is proof of that, a record of the moment, a reward.”
Laurent Millet’s work can be seen in numerous publications including his 2014 book, Les Enfantillages Pittoresques (Filigranes Editions) and in major museum collections, including The Art Institute of Chicago, Maison Européenne de la Photographie (Paris), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and Fonds National d’art Contemporain (Paris), among others.
Catherine Edelman Gallery at EXPO CHICAGO 2018
600 E Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
|Friday, September 28||11:00 am – 7:00 pm|
|Saturday, September 29||11:00 am – 7:00 pm|
|Sunday, September 30||11:00 am – 6:00 pm|
@edelmangallery @expochicago #expoartweek #expochicago2018