Featuring: Geoffrey Ansel Agrons
Juror’s Statement: I have to be careful not to be lured back by my past in coastal Maine. Years spent in Rockport and Camden. The thick fog over the water most mornings. The memory of the sound of the ice breaking on the lake in late spring. The way the harbor would miraculously freeze into windblown peaks in the winter. The ice on the windows making me think of Minor White and his time in Rochester, but then bringing me back to my childhood in upstate New York near the Adirondacks, winters so intense we could climb from the snow banks onto the roof…(icicles still grow to several feet in length, the ponds still freeze over smooth for hockey and skating, my son is gleeful every year when we visit my parents).
These photographs of water pull at me in unexpected ways. I feel a longing to return to the extremes of the Northeast, away from the sun and drought of California, to the crushing humidity of summer and the ceaseless snow of the winter. I know this is nostalgia at its finest, but jurying this exhibition of Water has surprised me by not just the flood of memories, but the surprising quality and variety of the pictures. I’ve actually honestly never had a more difficult time jurying a show. When I narrowed the nearly 3000 photographs down to 290, I stared at them and thought: I could curate a show of the sea, the wild, unpredictable sea. Just the sea. Sometimes black, sometimes azure, sometimes tumultuous, sometimes like glass, sometimes opaque, sometimes translucent. It was tempting to think of a line of fathomless oceans on the walls, their horizons only shifting with storms or broken by lightning bolts or occasionally a couple embracing way too far from shore.