Artist Talk: Thursday, February 3rd 7pm
Location: Jennifer Schwartz Gallery – TULA Art Center, Suite K2, 75 Bennett Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30309
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Curation and Statement by LUCEO’s Matt Eich:
Escapism noun \is-ˈkā-ˌpi-zəm\: habitual diversion of the mind to purely imaginative activity or entertainment as an escape from reality or routine.
In David Walter Banks and Kendrick Brinson’s debut solo exhibition (a duet if you will) these young photographers lead us into seemingly unlikely worlds. Through their images, the viewer is invited to escape into different places and access a subtle variety of emotions.
Banks’ images deal with notions of reality while Brinson makes photographs that manage to be quirky but heartfelt without poking fun at the people she depicts. Their visual approaches, while different, both manage to be tongue-in-cheek without coming off as judgmental. Stylistically unified by their vibrant use of color it is easy to see their influence on one another.
In a selection of Polaroids from their ongoing essay “The Coast”, Banks and Brinson leave mementoes from their own personal escapes, from both of the hectic daily schedules of being a working photographer and also the normal tools of their trade, the DSLR. Instead they have adopted the nearly extinct Polaroid to illustrate the ephemeral and fleeting nature of these getaways. This set of images pulls back the veil on the artists own relationship, showing how intertwined they really are, beyond the projects they undertake. Banks and Brinson are each other’s muse.
Through their exploration of escapism in theme parks and attractions, escapism as a lifestyle for the elderly or their own personal escapism to remember the simple joy of making pictures, these images direct our thoughts to escape in our society. As Americans, maybe as humans, many of us are wired with the desire to break from reality. Banks and Brinson confront this head-on through the lives of others and are still able to bare their own vulnerabilities.
Ultimately, what are we escaping from but the fleeting nature of life, the certainness of death? As Sun City resident Tom Woods said to Brinson, “Enjoy your youth, I’ll tell ya, you never know how much you have left.”
DAVID WALTER BANKS (b. 1982) is an American born photographer living in Atlanta, Georgia. He is a conceptually based documentary and portrait photographer. His work is aimed at questioning the way in which we view the everyday reality around us. Banks was a finalist for the 2010 Magnum Expression Award, and was one of the Magenta Foundation Flash Forward 2009 census of emerging photographers. His work was exhibited at the 2009 LOOK3 Festival of the Photograph, the 2010 LOOKbetween Festival and most recently at the Aperture Gallery in New York and the Houston Center for Photography. David’s clients have included The New York Times, Stern Magazine, TIME Magazine, US News & World Report, GQ, Bombay Sapphire, Forbes Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, ESPN The Magazine, The FADER Magazine, Golf Digest, Spin Magazine, XXL Magazine, Sporting News, Interscope Records, IEEE Spectrum Magazine, Bloomberg News and Atlanta Magazine.
KENDRICK BRINSON (b. 1983) is a photographer based out of Atlanta, Georgia. She worked full-time as an intern and a staff photographer for newspapers for three and a half years after receiving a journalism degree from the University of Georgia in 2005. In 2009, she left the world of being a staff photographer to pursue personal projects and to work full-time with LUCEO. Her current photographic interests include exploring the Deep South as well as aging in the retirement paradise of Sun City, Arizona in its 50th anniversary year. Her clients include TIME Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Atlanta Magazine, AARP Bulletin, New Scientist, US News & World Report, The Chronicle of Higher Education and The New York Times, among others. In 2010 she was one of the Critical Mass Top 50. Her work has been exhibited at 25CPW (NYC), The Houston Center for Photography (Houston), LOOKbetween (Charlottesville) and Jennifer Schwartz Gallery (Atlanta). Most recently, Kendrick was awarded the 2011 Houston Center for Photography Fellowship for her body of work on Sun City.