Sunday, April 5, 2015

Montserrat College of Art Senior Shows: "To Whom It May Concern"

Spring is finally upon us after a long winter with warmer weather coming soon, but the Montserrat senior thesis exhibitions are coming up now this April at the Porter Mill. The first one of two this month is Corinne D'Orsi, Melissa McGinty, and Melanie Simpson's "To Whom It May Concern".

Each artist explores subject matter that is much too difficult to confront or reveal without the use of a vehicle such as photography. Their work conveys powerful expressions of emotion, bringing the viewer along for the ride.

Concerning the balance of her conscious and unconscious mind, D’Orsi creates a collection of work in which her desires play a large role. Her photographs have a soft, illusory atmosphere, inviting the viewer to step into her dream-world, where the impossible becomes possible. With landscapes that are unfamiliar, and portraits that are mostly unrealistic, she finds a balance between subtlety and the romantic. In doing so, D’Orsi awakens feelings of desire, freedom, and attraction, in an idealized view of reality. Combined with her installations, which explore the physicality of these emotions, an environment unfolds where one can truly experience her subconscious.

Through photographs and handwritten text, McGinty explores the healing process that occurs when being faced with the loss of a loved one. Her photographs of black and white landscapes document the physical journey she is taking, while creating a new association with each location. By reclaiming these locations in this way, she is able to move on from the memories that she wants to forget. Pairing the photographs with the text of her own lingering thoughts after someone has left helps to enhance the experience that McGinty is leading you through.

Simpson’s work is about the struggle and healing process that can be experienced through dealing with sexual assault. She creates photographs in physical layers for the viewer to search through and explore on a deeper level. Simpson is asking the viewer to understand each layer individually, and together, to help portray the feelings associated with this issue. By talking about her own personal experiences, she opens the floor for conversation about the prevalence of sexual assault in today’s society. Simpson shows
that the healing process is not just about moving forward, but sometimes having to take one step forward, and two steps back, to inevitably get to a point of feeling whole again. Her work is showing her own journey out of the darkness and into the light. 

To Whom It May Concern will be on view from April 8th - 18th. The opening reception will be Wednesday, April 8th 5pm-8pm at Porter Mill Studios in Beverly, MA. 

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