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Carlson Gallery exhibit explores new work

Michael Escañuelas
Staff Writer

The photography department is exploring the meaning of the words “invited” and “uninvited” with an exhibit that opened this week in the Carlson Gallery.

The gallery allows aspiring photographers to display their work, inviting students, faculty and staff to view their exhibits.

The exhibit, which will be on display until Dec. 4, was divided into two separate sections.

The “Uninvited” section was done by Leah Gose and Ashlae Shepler, two independent artists whose work was chosen by Gary Colby, photography department chairman, and Dion Johnson, director of the University’s art galleries.

The second section of the exhibit is called “Invited” and includes photos done by students in the photography department from the various classes the department offers.

“We are just asking the question,” Colby said. “What’s the extent of the difference between ‘invited’ and ‘uninvited’?”

On the north side of the Carlson Gallery are four large displays that contain several smaller photos; these displays are part of the “Uninvited” exhibit.

Containing 16 photos on each large display, each small photograph is shot through a peephole, giving the viewer a perspective of someone peeking into another’s private life.

“It’s slightly creepy, but very creative,” said Katie Title, a junior business major. “It’s an interesting insight into the private lives of people who think no one is watching.”

Of the first four displays, many of the photos show images of people in their most private moments.

Each blurred image contains people or objects displaying slight hints at private emotions like fear, curiosity, and loneliness.

In addition to those, many of the photos also contain images of normal social activities.

Four additional displays were put up in another part of the gallery.

These images were put into a more private location because of Homecoming and their more risqué content.

These images contained more personal depictions like sexual activity, innuendos and ignited many of the same themes but added another human emotion: sexuality.

“I was really surprised at the piece,” said Courtney Droke, a senior photography major. “I’ve never seen an exhibit like this. I like the perspective.”

The other section of the exhibit, titled “Invited,” was placed throughout the rest of the gallery and consisted of student work.

The photographs that lined the gallery displayed various different styles of photography including portraits and digital photography.

“All of these photos are self expressive and very personal,” Colby said.

The “Invited” portion of the exhibit served as a nice balance to the more vague “Uninvited” display.

The photographs that were included in this portion were diverse and gave an interesting insight into what the students of the photography department are working on.

Before this exhibit, student work was not displayed very often.

Typically, senior projects were the only works that would be placed on display, Colby said.

The idea for the second half of the exhibit came out of the recent Homecoming event that was held at the University of La Verne.

Parents and students were able to come to gallery and see the projects that students have been working on throughout the semester.

“The theme of the exhibit strongly emphasizes with them exploring their point of view and the technical aspect of photography,”s Anita Bunn, adjunct professor of photography, said.

For more information on dates and times to view the exhibit, call the photography department at 909-593-3511, ext. 4285.

Michael Escañuelas can be reached at michael.escanuelas@laverne.edu.

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