Local artists Larry Emerson and Byron Sletten have very different ways of looking at the world, which come together in their new joint exhibit at the Regional Arts Commission. Emerson's photography explores everyday surroundings to reveal what is actually there, while Sletten's digital work navigates instead what might be there. “Origins: Natural Selections” features photographs, mixed media and video installations that uncover the beauty, complexity and mysteries of the world around us.
Emerson's photographs capture vibrant images of life’s background noise; the things we pass daily without seeing, like a forgotten gargoyle perched atop a building or the visual “smell” of a rose. The images remind viewers that there is art everywhere. “The beauty of it is that it changes every day,” Emerson says. Sletten, whose work is done digitally using mathematic algorithms, explores the world around us cosmically. He likens his art to a pull-down, retractable attic ladder to the cosmos. “The whole universe is up there,” Sletten says. “My art is a way of trying to understand what's in the attic.”
"Origins: Natural Selections" opened at The Gallery at RAC on Friday, Oct. 25 and will continue through Saturday, Dec. 21. Join the curator and artists for a gallery talk, 5:30-7pm on Wednesday, Nov. 13. Admission is free.