Washington DC—HEMPHILL opens Colby Caldwell: gun shy on Saturday, March 24, 2012, with a public reception from 6:30–8:30pm. The exhibition will remain on view through May 25, 2012.
“A photograph embeds time, freezes it, and carries it forward. Each time it is looked upon, it lives, with new eyes giving life to the fixed image.”
-Colby Caldwell, 2012
While artists working in various media explore themes of memory and nostalgia, photographers are closely tied to such themes given the nature of their medium. Photography captures a moment in time, bringing the past into the present and the future. In gun shy, Colby Caldwell’s photographs of depleted shot gun shells, abandoned duck blinds, found birds and feathers, and abstractions derived from a corrupted film frame highlight his preoccupation with this relationship between photography and memory. Caldwell uses the photographic medium to memorialize objects that would otherwise be forgotten or neglected. The photographs exhibited in gun shy bring together distinct yet parallel bodies of work Caldwell has been creating over several years, inspired by both the changing landscape surrounding his property in rural St. Mary’s, MD, and by a corrupted frame of Super 8mm film of landscapes shot while traveling. Not only do Caldwell’s works conjure feelings of nostalgia and allusions to death, but they also serve metaphorically as epitaphs for the now antiquated film age that Caldwell himself mourns. Like flowers adorning headstones, Caldwell’s beautifully alluring depictions of those things that have been discarded and left behind will captivate the viewer.
gun shy is the seventh solo exhibition of Colby Caldwell’s work at HEMPHILL since the gallery opened in 1993. His work is included in numerous private collections as well as the collections of the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX, the National Museum of American Art, Washington DC, and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA. Caldwell received a BFA from the Corcoran College of Art and Design in 1990 and currently lives and works in St. Mary’s City, MD, and Asheville, NC.
The publication “gun shy” accompanies the exhibition, including writings by Frank Goodyear, Ferdinand Protzman, Joe Lucchesi, Jayme McLellan, and Bernard Welt. A limited edition of 10 artist copies each contains a signed archival pigment print. The publication is 80 pages, with 50 full color reproductions.
The exhibition Colby Caldwell: gun shy at HEMPHILL from March 24 through May 26, 2012 is concurrent with the exhibition Colby Caldwell: spent at Civilian Art Projects, Washington DC, from March 23 through May 5, 2012. www.civilianartprojects.com