A series of work collected from the past sixteen years hangs proudly in the photo show “Collaborations” at the Herndon Gallery. The show provides spectators with an overview of pieces by Professor of Photography Dennie Eagleson and her students, taken from larger projects.
There is an atmosphere of accomplishment in the gallery, as this work is what characterizes Eagleson’s experience of teaching at Antioch College. It is the reviving of a complex form of art that does not hang lightly for the casual observer, and this is why it is essential to Antioch. “Nobody comes to Antioch and finishes casually,” Eagleson says.
An Antioch experience is more than a sum of grades and credits. There is a heavy investment and connection to the artist’s complicated lives, inspiring them to render meaningful art. One that was particularly touching to me was of Twyla Clark’s “A Body of Artifacts.” I was drawn to this piece because there was an additional work of pottery standing in front of it. They are gray-white hands connected to fingers by metal wires. It sits in front of an image of an insect case exhibit. As Eagleson explains, the piece reflects the artist’s experience with medical problems and medical testing.
I loved how real it felt since the image looked as if it were washed up and brushed on a canvas, but then there is so much tension with the different shades of detail in the insect’s bodies. Then, you see two very detailed shrunken hands that speak of despair. Although her whole project was not exhibited, I definitely had a feeling of moods and ideas that she painted clearly.
Herndon gallery is most essential to the Antioch community in that it is a true expression of what Antioch is about. A cursory browsing through the gallery would prompt one to notice the depth and variety of forms of art that were created on the Antioch campus in the course the last two decades. Dennie’s broad interests in different forms of photography allowed for these students to explore independently how they could express their experiences. One would also notice a great amount of energy in this informed fine art. These pieces are lively and engaging.
They express an elegant creativity that was achieved by the success of using a variety of alternative processes including experimentation with different types of cameras and hand applied emulations.
Although many of the photographs may have been printed digitally, only several were digitally reworked, as technology had progressed only recently. Work in this gallery also includes books thatnot only use image for expression, but text as well through the use of poetry and commentary.
Over all, this gallery does the job of sharing stories, and what’s more important is that they are stories of Antioch students undergoing important transformations. For Eagleson, the exhibition shows how facility through camera benefits the community and it affirms her belief that in this period in Antioch’s history, students should continue to put on notice and articulate what is important.
The gallery hours are from Thursday-Tuesday from 3:00-8:00 p.m. There will also be an opening reception on October 26, from 7:00-9:00.
Dennie’s Photos are up on the Antiochians Gallery at: gallery.antiochians.org/v/collaborations/