News and Events
Phillips Exeter Academy's Lamont Gallery presents "Double Exposed: Photographs by Courtney Bent"
Monday, September 10, 2012 - Saturday, October 20, 2012
From Monday, September 10 to Saturday, October 20, the Lamont Gallery at Phillips Exeter Academy will present "Double Exposed: Photographs by Courtney Bent," an exhibit of photography by award-winning photographer and filmmaker Courtney Bent. The Lamont Gallery is in the Frederick R. Mayer Art Center on Tan Lane. An artist reception will be held on Friday, September 14, 6:30-8 p.m., and a Gallery Talk will be held on Saturday, September 15, at 10 a.m. All events are free and open to the public.
Bent's work has taken her from Masai camps in East Africa to death row in the United States. In Double Exposed, she explores the notion of give-and-take between the photographer and the sitter. This discovery reveals a narrative inside each portrait and allows the sitter to have an active role in the artistic process.
Bent has received more than 30 photography and film awards, including the Golden Light Award, the Loreen Arbus Disability Awareness Grant; and grants from the Americans with Disabilities Act, VSA–the International Organization on Arts and Disability, the LEF Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Maine Photographic Workshops, and the Houston Center for Photography.
The exhibit will feature 26 silver gelatin prints of Bent's work, as well as more than a dozen of her original Polaroid and color prints. Bent has also provided a short film from one of her sitters—"Zach"—and a few interactive games for younger visitors.
Reflecting upon Bent's notion of give-and-take, Sara Zela, interim director of the Lamont Gallery, explains a unique and participatory element of this exhibit: "The Lamont Gallery created opportunities for our visitors to be active participants in this exhibition. A visitor-driven exhibition takes place in our side bay gallery, where visitors become photographers, creating a photograph of a friend or other visitors using a Polaroid Instant camera, digital camera and printer. Visitors contribute their photograph to the gallery wall and the Polaroid print becomes the sitters' gift for allowing the picture to be taken." Zela adds, "The gallery also embraces reflective contributions; journals are placed under selected images for visitors to share their own interpretation by leaving a story, poem or drawing. Inspired by Bent's concept of giving, visitors are encouraged to take with them one of the smaller [pocket-sized] versions of the image they just reflected upon."
Zela says she is excited and curious to experience the reactions of students, faculty, staff and visitors as they create and contribute throughout this exhibit. "It will be fun to see the visitor-driven portion of this exhibit grow and change and ultimately become something new every day," she says.
For more information contact Sara Zela at 603-777-3361. Gallery hours during the school year are: Monday 1-5 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; closed Sundays and school holidays. For more information, contact the Lamont Gallery at 603-777-3461. For a complete list of upcoming musical and community events, please visit our PEA Community Calendar. You may also call the PEA public events line at 603-777-4309, or visit the PEA website. Directions to the Academy are available at 603-777-4330.
Interested in learning more?
Read about Bent's "Shooting Beauty" project at Exeter which recently brought together Exonians and their Best Buddies...