CAROLYN DRAKE WITH VANESSA WOODS
FRIDAY, May 4th, 2018 7:30PM
San Francisco Art Institute Osher Lecture Hall
800 Chestnut Street San Francisco, CA
Lecture: $15.00 general admission
students with/current ID admitted free
Carolyn Drake is interested in photography as a medium for reshaping reality and history, and for its uncanny capacity to activate human emotions. Initially drawn to a lyrical yet enigmatic approach to documentary work, she has most recently earned acclaim for her visual collaborations, through which the traditional divide between author and subject are brought into question.
Drake lived in Istanbul for nearly a decade, developing personal projects and working on commissions in Turkey, Ukraine, Central Asia, and China. She was drawn to communities whose identities resist domination and clear definition. Over time, she tailored her work abroad to mirror the odd and entangled cultural exchange that her professional photo career enabled.
Drake returned to the US in 2014 and is now based in Vallejo, California, from where she is currently using photography and other media to explore the dynamic between how we see each other and how we relate to each other.
Drake’s awards include the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Lange Taylor Prize, a Fulbright Fellowship, and the Anamorphosis prize, among others. Her independently-published photo books have received wide attention, and have recently been translated as installations, including current solo shows at SFMOMA and the Houston Center for Photography.
Woods’s collages utilize disparate associations to re-imagine and re-contextualize contemporary and historical narratives. The material for her collages comes from a broad range of sources including art history books, photo books, vintage/contemporary magazines, found paper ephemera, etc. In each piece that she creates, the original image is decontextualized through the act of cutting and it’s meaning re-contextualized through new associations. Woods’ current body of work titled Somewhere Between Here and There uses material recently inherited from her deceased collage mentor/photographer Ken Graves. Part elegy, part eulogy, the collages in Somewhere Between Here and There generate psychological spaces that invoke the borderlands of dreams and navigate the places between memory and history or the known and the unknown.
Woods graduated with an MFA with honors, from the San Francisco Art Institute. Her artwork and films have been exhibited internationally including Stanford Art Spaces at Stanford University, The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, and The Institute of Contemporary Art in San Jose. Woods has been the recipient of numerous awards including a Murphy and Cadogan Fellowship from the SF Arts Commission, a Film Arts Foundation Grant, and the San Francisco Art Institute's MFA Fellowship. She has also been awarded residencies at Djerassi, the Headlands Center for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony and in Pont-Aven, France, through the Museum of Pont-Aven. Woods is represented by Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco. For more information please visit vanessawoods.com