A consistent dynamism unites the works exhibited in Houston Center for Photography’s 36th Annual Membership Exhibition. Though radically different in content, style, and format, the photographs chosen all demonstrate a fluidity that defies categorization. None can be easily fixed within the narrow confines of traditional genre classifications. They are not simply portraits, nor landscapes, nor still lifes, but a complex combination of several of these categories, presented together to formulate a compelling comment on our social and cultural moment.
The 38 artists included in this exhibition demonstrate the dynamism and expansive nature of contemporary photography. Positioned amid an endlessly shifting terrain of content and culture, today’s photographers are not bound by any preconceived notions of what photography is or should be. They draw upon the medium’s history or break from its traditions in equal measure. Cameras are utilized as intimate partners and public agents. Both the surface and the hidden depths of the self and the world are explored. Some were made for the sake of art, others to explore or reveal causes beyond that realm. The one constant is this: the artists in this Membership Exhibition utilize photography as a medium in the strictest sense of the word: a tool of action or thoughtful impression. More than strictly portraits, landscapes, and still lifes, these photographs communicate the interests, aesthetic, and inquiries of our visually complex, contemporary moment.