Exhibition on view: January 11-March 15, 2020
This winter, SVAC is proud to offer a suite of exhibitions addressing important and topical issues. This exhibition will be the first winter exhibition offered in Yester House in many years, extending SVAC’s programming, and the first that offers a thematic suite of exhibitions that branches out to include artists beyond the organization’s artist member base.
The I Am More: Facing Stigma photography exhibition, created and sponsored by the Yellow Tulip Project, features black and white portraits of people who are dealing with mental health challenges personally or through the experiences of family or friends. The individuals–musicians, artists, nature lovers, parents, and more–are dedicated to challenging assumptions and stigma around mental illness and what mental illness “looks like.”
The Forty-Seven Main Street Artists Group demonstrate the inspirational power of abstract self expression in paint.
Renowned photographer Gisela Gamper documents her personal journey of love and mourning in her photographic series titled “Longing for David.” After David, her husband, lover, musician and sometime collaborator of 43 years suddenly passed away she missed her physical connection to him. In her grief she found some consolation in playing with his favorite clothes and documenting herself wearing them. The photographs are a visual testament to her grieving process.
Bennington College Visiting Professor Terry Boddie takes a complex approach to the legacy of the transatlantic slave trade. Nationally recognized photographer Carl Austin Hyatt shows portraits made from two decades of travels in the Andes of Peru. In mixed media portraits, students from area schools present themselves as they want to be seen. We are, all of us, more than meets the eye!
These artists, offered opportunities for solo or group exhibitions, curated and organized by faculty and/or staff, are responding to related but distinct themes: “art that heals,” “personal narrative,” “I am more than meets the eye,” or “art as asocial message.” The exhibition will empower members of our community to speak up about a range of critical issues.
Alongside the artwork, SVAC will host a panel discussion with some of our area’s leading mental health experts, in conjunction with various artists. We hope the I Am More: Facing Stigma exhibition along with the panel discussions will raise essential awareness of mental health issues. We also hope that the varied artwork coming together in this exhibition will be the catalyst for other conversation–about what matters most, both to the artists and to our gallery visitors. For some, mental health will be at the heart of that discussion. For others, different aspects of identity and humanity will resonate.
SVAC staff are not healthcare providers. Our role in curating this exhibition is to create an opportunity for art to inspire connections and conversations. The exhibition will provide space to come together–which is at the center of our mission. SVAC will provide opportunities for visitors to express their responses to all the artwork on display.
About The Yellow Tulip Project:
The Yellow Tulip Project is a youth driven non-profit that believes in smashing the stigma surrounding mental illness and building a community of people who realize that hope happens when youth and community leaders work together. We hope that someday mental illness will be as normal to talk about as any physical illness, and are fiercely dedicated to making this goal a reality. Mental illness is a silent epidemic that affects one in five people worldwide. We want people to talk about mental illness, not feel isolated or feel alone. This has to happen now! www.theyellowtulipproject.org
I Am More: Facing Stigma is organized by The Yellow Tulip Project, Portland, Maine. All photographs ©️ Lissy Thomas Photography.
About Gisela Gamper:
Gisela Gamper has been photographing and exhibiting nationally and internationally since the 1970’s. From 1999 to 2011 Gamper shifted her creative output to video and collaborated with David Gamper, musician and composer, on a music/video installation they called See Hear Now.
The duo performed in various new music venues in New York and nationally. In 2013. Gisela returned to photography with a series of photographs called ‘Longing for David’ dedicated to David, who died in 2011. Among Gamper’s grants and awards are two Fellowship Grants from the Vermont Council on the Arts in 1985 and 1990, and the Hasselblad Cover Award in 1991. For two concurrent solo exhibitions in New Orleans in 1997, the Contemporary Artists Collection of Station Hill Arts by Barrytown, Ltd. published Fabrications, a catalogue of Gamper’s photographs with text by Rachel Pollack. Gamper lives and works in New York City and Vermont. www.giselagamper.com
About Carl Austin Hyatt:
Over the last twenty-one years, Carl has made more than thirty-five trips to the highlands of Peru to learn from their shamans, to walk their ancient paths with them and to photograph a land and a people who, by their very existence, give hope to mankind. Carl has photographed from the northern coastal desert where ancient cultures are still buried in sand to the even more ancient temples of Tiahuanaco on lake Titicaca. He always returns to the high mountain communities in the Cusco region where the shamanic traditions still thrive. www.carlaustinhyatt.com
About Terrie Bodie:
Terry Boddie is a photographer and multi-disciplinary artist who explores historical and contemporary aspects of memory, migration and globalization refracted through his experience as a first-generation immigrant from the island of Nevis in the Eastern Caribbean. He experiments with different disciplines in search of a language that transcends our traditional notions of a photograph, blurring the distinctions between photography, drawing and painting. Boddie earned his BFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts and an MFA from Hunter College. He has exhibited his work in institutions including the Parc La Villette in Paris, Brooklyn Museum, Smithsonian, The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Philadelphia Museum of Art Art Museum of the Americas. Boddie’s awards and honors include artist residences at The Studio Museum of Harlem, The Center for Book Arts, Marie Sharpe Walsh Foundation. He’s also received artist fellowships from Center for Photography at Woodstock, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Brodsky Center, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and a photography grant from the George and Helen Segal Foundation. His work is in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum, The National Museum of African American History and Culture as well as private collections.