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Mesmerizing Photographs Explore the Intricacies of Memory at the Seattle Art Museum
Amy Blakemore, Three Girls, 1988. Gelatin silver photograph, 15 x 15in. Courtesy of the artist and Inman Gallery, Houston. © Amy Blakemore.
SEATTLE, WA.- From September 4, 2010, through February 13, 2011, the Seattle Art Museum will present the exhibition Amy Blakemore: Photographs, 1988-2008. Ranging from black-and-white street photographs from the late 1980s to recent portraits and landscapes, the exhibition brings together nearly 40 photographs in a twenty-year survey of the Houston, Texas-based artist’s work.

Originally rooted in traditions of documentary photography, American artist Amy Blakemore compares the act of taking pictures to the experience of serendipitously gathering broken bits and lost objects during a long walk. This exhibition demonstrates that, throughout her career, Blakemore’s photographs have maintained a tantalizing sense of interrupted or incomplete narrative – what at a glance may appear to be a banal mise en scène becomes with further inspection a mysterious and psychologically penetrating view of the world we live in.

Blakemore's work is in part defined by her embrace of low-tech cameras with limited range of focus. Her use of such idiosyncratic tools can bring a number of unpredictable irregularities to her compositions, including partially blurred passage and a compressed depth of field that, at times, becomes vertiginous. At the same time, her compositions are rigorously composed. Through skillful printing techniques she coaxes a remarkably nuanced palette in both black and white and color, and she manipulates the idiosyncrasies of her photographs, capturing the ways in which memory at once records and distorts visual information.

Seattle Art Museum | Amy Blakemore | Black-and-white Street Photographs |




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