FMP, Exhibition Reflection

It has been one week since I took down my show at Four Corners. Overall, I think the show was successful, and I’m proud of what I was able to accomplish, however, there were definitely aspects that I could improve upon and I hope to learn from these moving forward. 

With hindsight, the biggest challenge for me was not being able to see the space in person before the day of hanging. As mentioned in a previous post, I had attempted to plan through building a maquette, and also begun experimenting with Google Sketchup, but I really found it hard to visualize the environment and the way that the work would look when on the walls. This put a lot of pressure on the day of hanging and the final arrangement wasn’t as considered as it should have been.

Evaluating the final layout, I think it would have been good to have less images displayed at a larger scale. I have made such a large quantity of work over the last two years, and I wanted to convey the time that I had spent journeying though this region, but perhaps it resulted in the walls being too busy. I didn’t show any images that I didn’t feel were strong, but I still feel like I could have done a finer edit and saved some of the images for a publication. With regards to the content of the images, the show was very portrait heavy. Additional details and landscapes might have enriched the body of work and helped new viewers to better understand the context.

There were additional visual elements that I had originally planned to include that my eventual time frame and budget didn’t allow for. I had hoped to show a map of the area, and provide text captions for each of the images. These definitely would have added to the experience for the viewer. 

With all this said, I did receive a very positive reception from my audience. Although people complimented the aesthetic qualities of the images, It felt most rewarding to see the work facilitating discussion. One person said that they had not seen photographs like this before, which was a great compliment to receive. People said that the work was positive and that I presented my subjects in a very dignified manner - something that I am always aiming for. I appreciated my visitors sharing their experience at the show on their own social media, and my account received a lot of new followers throughout the week.        

Reflecting on the exhibition experience, I can see that I didn’t allocate appropriate time for certain aspects of planning. I had hosted many exhibitions previously, but never a solo show on this large of a scale. I think I underestimated the challenge that this would be to organize remotely, especially when located ‘in the field’ for the month proceeding the exhibition. With all this said, I have to give myself credit for achieving what I did, despite these challenges, and use this as a learning experience for the future. 

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