On Tuesday, February 16, the photography exhibit Lure by Pam Fox opened at Hampden-Sydney's Atkinson Museum. An artist and photographer, Ms. Fox is also Elliott Associate Professor of Fine Arts at Hampden-Sydney College.
About the Lure exhibit, Ms. Fox says, "Animals are often used to symbolize those aspects of human nature and desire that are real, yet unseen. Our associations with animals have their roots in art, mythology, religion, and literature. We are drawn to animals for their symbolic powers; they represent more primal versions of ourselves. In this work, I orchestrate the illusion of a fleeting encounter with a wild creature in the landscape."
"A camera is an instrument of pursuit and capture. Unlike the hunter who is in pursuit of real prey, the photographer is in the business of transforming the real and leaving it behind. As part of the image-making process, the lens inherently turns what is shot into artifice or symbol. There is visual ambiguity in the process: the lure calls us toward something seemingly real, something that instinctually draws us closer."
"Captured and distorted by the camera, can a plastic deer or bird elicit a response similar to that evoked by a real animal? Does it become a target for human emotional response and the projection of feeling? I am interested in the tension between representation of these idyllic (fake) animals and the consequence of what might lie outside of the frame."
Ms. Fox holds her B.F.A. and M.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University in Communications Arts and Photography respectively. She has been the recipient of many awards and honors in the Arts, including two Virginia Commission for the Arts Fellowship Grants in Photography and a Virginia Museum Fellowship in Photography. She was recently honored with the Theresa Pollack Prize in Photography. Her work is represented in many corporate and museum collections, including the permanent collection of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
Lure is open at the Museum from February 16 through March 25. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Friday, 10 AM to 5 PM, or by appointment (Angie Way, 434-223-6134). On Thursday, February 25, 4:30 PM, at Atkinson Museum there is an artist reception and gallery talk by Ms. Fox in which she will discuss her new series of photographs and mixed media work in this exhibit.