Streets, highways, trails, and sidewalks (among other linear passageways) are at once both powerful and peculiar structures. They consist of both the concrete, stoic forms that make up their substance, as well as the transient, embodied characters who traverse their spans through time and space. The silent but directing pathway becomes both a facilitator and a collector of narratives for those willing to see, listen, and perhaps participate in this journey. This beautiful tension between the permanent and the ephemeral was captured in a myriad of ways by the 57 images that I was privileged to curate into Street Scenes, 2021.
As someone who has been quite often on the other side of the jurying process, I found the act of viewing and sorting through the 371 images to be a genuine pleasure, punctuated with far too many moments of internal conflict and debate within my own mind. The sheer volume of quality work, in a multitude of media, could’ve conceivably generated 3 or 4 different shows, all of which would have been fascinating to curate and visit. My own lifelong experience with, and allegiance to, painting was tested, challenged and broadened as I had the incredible privilege of viewing a superbly rich abundance of photographic and digital imagery. Ultimately, my 57 picks achieved a number of distinctions. In particular, they were able to transcend their medium and give the viewer an experience greater than the sum of their parts. In the end, the most important criteria was that the imagery had to be BEAUTIFUL, even if the content dealt with difficult, mundane or obscure truths. Beauty, and its uncanny ability to speak truth directly to the soul, was my prime, guiding factor.
The street has historically existed as a metaphor for our collective and individual pilgrimage through life. I trust that these thoughtful images will speak to you in a multitude of unexpected ways as you take this moment to pause and reflect upon your own journey.