Chazen Museum of Art

Event

Un/Seen: The Alchemy of Fixing Shadows

February 15 to April 14 | Leslie and Johanna Garfield Galleries

Un/Seen: The Alchemy of Fixing Shadows

February 15 through April 14, 2019

The earliest photographic processes were simultaneously science, art, and magic. This new, strange alchemy concealed as much as it revealed, light and silver halide combining, developing, fixing with a swirl of chemical across paper, tin, glass. Historic photographs allowed for new ways of seeing yet kept other things in the dark. Moments, while made visible, were always already echoes of the thing itself, dealing in snapshots of reality that were never quite reality. And while the visible is very much at play, it’s what is rendered invisible—the process—that lurks in the shadows of the end product. The toxic chemicals and rituals photographers employed, happenings outside of camera lenses’ carefully structured views, and the larger social and cultural patterns that shaped the production of images are often hidden and much harder to see. Nineteenth-century photographic and proto-photographic processes—silhouettes, daguerreotypes, tintypes, ambrotypes and cyanotypes—allowed for innovative ways of presenting and shaping images of the world, a toxic labor that left a great deal unseen. Today, these practices offer contemporary artists new tools for telling stories about the ways past and present intersect—about bodies, desires, communities in the shadows, striving to be seen—revealing hidden patterns in the process.

This exhibition was curated by students in AH506/806 Introduction to Museum Studies: Theory & Methods, taught by Sarah Anne Carter, Curator and Director of Research at the Chipstone Foundation, and produced in collaboration with the Chipstone Foundation.

Free Public Programs

February 14, 2019
5:30–6:30 p.m. Roundtable Discussion with Eric Baillies, Tom Jones, Tomiko Jones, and Jon Horvath, Chazen Auditorium

6:30–8 p.m. Opening Reception Refreshments • music by Jason Kutz • cash bar, Mead Witter Lobby

Flash Gallery Talks
March 8, 2019, 2 p.m. with Jim Lattis, Science & the Arts, Garfield Gallery.
April 11, 2019, 12:30 p.m. with Anna Campbell, assistant professor gender & women's studies, sculptor. Garfield Gallery.

Art Spin
March 9, 2019, 12–2 p.m.

Drop in tours
Sunday, February 24, 2 p.m.
Thursday, March, 14, 12:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 24, 2 p.m.
Thursday April 4, 12:30 p.m.
Sunday April 14, 2 p.m.

Cyanotype Workshop
March 31, 2019, 12–3 p.m. with Carissa Heinrichs, 3rd year Printmaking MFA candidate, Art Studio Classroom.
 

Image: J. Shimon & J. Lindemann, (American, b. 1961) (American, 1957–2015), Poplar Harvest No. 1, 2012, ambrotype,
34 x 28 1/2 in., Dennis Rocheleau fund purchase, 2013.11

Visit us on the University of Wisconsin–Madison Campus

Chazen Museum of Art, 750 University Ave., Madison, WI

© 2011 - 2019 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System. All rights reserved.