October 20 – December 9, 2016
A strict binary has long existed between the contrasting effects of words and images. Words have been thought to be foundational, while images have been considered subordinate. Words have been valued as rhetorically primary, while images have been thought of as illustrative. But such bifurcation seems to artists and writers alike both constraining and unrealistic. How might the communicative and aesthetic status of words and images be profitably studied together? How do images and texts cooperate in single works of art as modalities in tension or unison? Seeing|Saying: Images and Words assembles important contemporary works that experiment with this combination of words and images from 18 artists: Shimon Attie, John Baldessari, Mark Bradford, Cris Bruch, Andrea Eis, Teresita Fernández, Howard Finster, Christian Marclay, Shirin Neshat, Dennis Oppenheim, Susan Harbage Page, José Parlá, Dan Perjovschi, Raymond Pettibon, Santiago Sierra, Hank Willis Thomas, and David Wojnarowicz in the Van Every Gallery, and Bethany Collins in the Smith Gallery. The works presented in the exhibition invite us to question the image-word divide, and remind us of our current saturation—digitally and materially—in images with words.
There will be two public lectures accompanying this exhibition. W. J. T. Mitchell, a leading theorist of visual representation, will speak Thursday, November 3 at 7:00pm in the Lilly Family Gallery, Chambers Building, at Davidson College. Scholar, art critic, and graphic novelist Nick Sousanis will speak on Thursday, November 10 at 7pm at Semans Lecture Hall, Belk Visual Arts Center, also at Davidson. Sousanis’ artwork will be on display from October 20 – December 9 in the Spencer Lobby of Chambers Building.
A small publication will be available featuring an essay by co-curator Dr. Van E. Hillard, professor of Rhetoric and Writing Studies at Davidson College. This exhibition was made possible through the generous support of the Bacca Foundation Visiting Lecture and Artist Fund, Herb Jackson and Laura Grosch Gallery Endowment, Malú Alvarez, Davidson College Class of 2002, and Davidson College Friends of the Arts.
Opening Reception – Thursday, October 20, 6:00-8:00pm; gallery talk at 6:00pm
W.J.T. Mitchell lecture – Thursday, November 3, 7:00pm in the Lilly Family Gallery
Nick Sousanis lecture – Thursday, November 10, 7:00pm at Semans Lecture Hall, Belk Visual Arts Center