Kelli Connell

 
Eden | Images courtesy of Yossi Milo Gallery and Catherine Edelman Gallery

Eden | Images courtesy of Yossi Milo Gallery and Catherine Edelman Gallery


These images were created from scanning and manipulating two or more negatives in Adobe Photoshop. Using the computer as a tool to create a “believable” situation is not that different from accepting any photograph as an object of truth, or by creating a story about two people seen laughing, making-out, or quarreling in a restaurant. These photographs reconstruct the private relationships that I have experienced personally, witnessed in public, or watched on television. The events portrayed in these photographs look believable, yet have never occurred. By digitally creating a photograph that is a composite of multiple negatives of the same model in one setting, the self is exposed as not a solidified being in reality, but as a representation of social and interior investigations that happen within the mind.

This work represents an autobiographical questioning of sexuality and gender roles that shape the identity of the self in intimate relationships. Polarities of identity such as the masculine and feminine psyche, the irrational and rational self, the exterior and interior self, the motivated and resigned self are portrayed. By combining multiple photographic negatives of the same model in each image, the dualities of the self are defined by body language and clothing worn. This work is an honest representation of the duality or multiplicity of the self in regards to decisions about intimate relationships, family, belief systems and lifestyle options.

The importance of these images lies in the representation of interior dilemmas portrayed as an external object – a photograph. Through these images the audience is presented with “constructed realities”. I am interested in not only what the subject matter says about myself, but also what the viewers response to these images says about their own identities and social constructs.

Sunday Afternoon

Sunday Afternoon

Guest House

Guest House

Head to Head

Head to Head

Convertible Kiss

Convertible Kiss

Carnival

Carnival

Woods and Roses

Woods and Roses

Domestic Distance

Domestic Distance

Windowsill

Windowsill

North Lakes

North Lakes

This Morning

This Morning

5am

5am

Yesterday

Yesterday

The Valley

The Valley

Bio
Kelli Connell received an MFA from Texas Woman’s University (2003). Her body of work entitled “Double Life” has been widely received and included in numerous national solo and group exhibitions. Her work is in the collections of Microsoft; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Columbus Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Museum of Contemporary Photography; and The Dallas Museum of Art. Recent publications include “MP3: Midwest Photographers’ Publication Project” co-published by Aperture and The Museum of Contemporary Photography, “Vitamin Ph: New Perspectives in Photography” by Phaidon and “Photo Art: The New World of Photography” by Aperture. Connell teaches at Columbia College Chicago. website | edelmangallery.com | kopeikingallery.com

Katherine Wolkoff

 
Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007


Growth and Despair/Deer Beds
The pictures entitled “Growth and Despair” were made during the last three months in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans. In the three years since Hurricane Katrina, this neighborhood has become a confusing intersection of tourist destination and ghost town. As I walk through the empty house lots, I become disoriented by the verdant grasses and bucolic landscape, forgetting that I am in a place of recent destruction. The natural world has taken back the landscape, reclaiming this site of complete devastation and turning it into a sad garden. The edges of house foundations, broken front stoops and cracked sidewalks are the humble ruins of a lost civilization. The grasses and vines seemed to indicate new growth after the storm. Now they have completely taken over the landscape, strangling the few remnants of the forgotten neighborhood.

Walking through the tall grasses in New Orleans, I immediately felt as if I were back in the fields of Rhode Island where I have made pictures of deer beds. I found the deer beds by following the paths of the deer to the nests where they sleep. Each time I came upon a bed it felt as if the deer had just departed, leaving a warm impression in the grass. I was always aware of their proximity. The pictures in New Orleans also follow the traces of an absent population, barely visible through the ruins left behind. Both bodies of work quietly embody the absence of a recently departed presence.

 

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

Deer bed, 2007

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

New Orleans, 2008

Bio
Katherine Wolkoff was born in 1976 and lives and works in New Orleans and New York. She graduated from Barnard College in 1998 and received her MFA in photography from the Yale School of Art in 2003. Her work has been widely exhibited and is included in the collections of the Addison Gallery of Art and the Norton Museum of Art among others. Her “Deer Beds” series was shown last spring at the New York Photo Festival and she is working on a book of the work. Katherine’s work has been extensively published in The New York Times Magazine, Aperture, Frieze, Monocle and twice among other publications. website.