The title of David Hilliard’s upcoming exhibition, Tending to Doubt, came out of a discussion between the artist and his mother regarding the latter’s bible study group. Hilliard — whose work often addresses personal and collective pasts through themes of masculinity, coming of age, sexuality, spirituality, and family — offers up an exhibition that allows the quest for spiritual identity to come to the fore. His subjects will be familiar to admirers of his esteemed oeuvre. Hilliard’s family and friends often figure prominently in his work, particularly his father, a divorced navy veteran and self-taught philosopher, and his mother, fervently devoted to both Florida and Christianity. Hilliard employs panoramas of his atheist father and his pious mother as touchstones to encourage a dialogue about spiritual exploration book-ended by these oppositions.
With his characteristic color panoramic style — most often presenting his pieces in two to five-part tableaux — Hilliard conveys a contiguity that affectively mirrors lived experience. His sequences of prints present to the viewer multiple perspectives on a given scene, but the resulting visual narratives leave room for subjective interpretation of how their plots unfold.
Joseph Guay’s series of work, Memory Portraits, also addresses questions of perspective and subjective experience. The pieces, photographic images with inlaid video installations, present an engaging dichotomy between the stark minimalism of the portraits and the fluidity of the video installations. The subjects themselves, people Guay has met over the past three years in Atlanta, New York, and Cuba, filmed the video footage featured in the work. He asked each to carry a small camera and capture, at eye level, moments within their lives. The result is a projection of each participant’s memory; the videos capture in real time the images and experiences that inform a person’s psychic life.
For Guay, the artistic process extends past the tactile meeting of camera and light or painter and sitter — it depends upon the formation of real relationships between people. His work conveys that desire to connect to another person’s complete life. Innovative and powerful, Memory Portraits allows the viewer to inhabit another way of seeing, to participate in the “collection and trade of someone’s memories.”
Through October 23. The opening reception takes place on Sept. 10, and there will be an informal artist talk on Sept. 11.
Jackson Fine Art
3115 East Shadowlawn Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30305