On Jan. 16, the Kamloops Art Gallery launched its Midnight Sun Camera Obscura, Out of Sight and Live Stream: Optical Rendering exhibits. The evening began with a curator’s tour lead by Charo Neville, giving gallery-goers an in-depth look at the artwork and the meaning behind it.
Neville initiated the tour with the Out of Sight exhibition. This featured a series of photographs by Eadweard Muybridge, who was famous for his work in human and animal locomotion photographs between 1830 and 1904.
The exhibit also featured the works of Harold Edgerton. This scientist made a major contribution to art with the invention of stop-action, stroboscopic and ultra-high-speed photography, allowing him to take photos that occurred either too slow or too fast for the human eye to really see. This allowed his work to literally freeze time. Edgerton lived from 1903 to 1990. Both he and Muybridge brought the works of art and science together. Their artwork really put a focus on various concepts such as innovation, time and movement.
The second exhibit, Midnight Sun Camera Obscura, was lead by Donald Lawrence. Lawrence is a professor of visual arts at TRU, and was also the artist who created the Pavilion Camera Obscura that is displayed in this exhibition. He conducted the narration for this portion of the tour, giving patrons insight into pinhole photography and camera obscuras. This exhibition featured a few pieces from a festival that took place in Dawson City, Yukon during the summer solstice. There, an international group of artists gathered and created their own camera obscuras. This festival was funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council through TRU. Lawrence was the mind behind this project and the one who organized it. The pieces displayed at the gallery are all from artists that are based in Kamloops, with a contemporary approach to understanding the value and history in camera obscuras.
Live Stream: Optical Rendering was the final exhibit of the tour, which explored self-illuminated sculpture in relation to camera obscuras. These projects also emerged from a Kamloops artist, who participated in the Yukon festival over the summer of 2015. It takes a unique and stunning approach to exploring the early days of the camera obscura.
The Midnight Sun Camera Obscura and the Out of Sight exhibits will run until March 19 and the Live Stream: Optical Rendering exhibit will run until March 12. Admission to the gallery is $3 for students and free on Thursdays, thanks to the support from BCLC.