Installation view

Contemporary Antiques

Curated by Frank Relle

December 1, 2012 – January 5, 2013

Octavia Art Gallery is pleased to present Contemporary Antiques, curated by Frank Relle. The exhibition will include traditional and alternative-process photographs shown alongside camera phone images curated from the social photo-sharing website, Instagram. Silver gelatin, glass plate negatives, photogravures, and other “antique” techniques utilized by contemporary photographers will be juxtaposed with digitally processed and “antiqued” Instagram camera phone images.

The show’s primary subject considers how contemporary photographers represent Louisiana using subject and technique to create visual references to the past. Secondly, the show will consider the current trend of viewing photographs on hand-held devices and will reveal the photograph as an object removed from digital display. The show acts as a dual metaphor. In conversation and debate, business people, conservationists, and politicians ask how to move Louisiana forward while preserving her precious past. The same conversation is occurring amongst photographers and print-producing professionals as they concurrently discuss the print industries “digital death” while trying to embrace new technologies and promote the value of physical printing.

The show will include 350 Instagram photographs, selected from 4500 submissions, from over 80 primarily unknown phone photographers and 30 framed photographs from 15 recognized museum and gallery photographers.

Frank Relle is a photographer born and based in New Orleans, Louisiana. He is a graduate of Tulane University with a degree in Cognitive Science and Philosophy. His work is included in the Smithsonian Museum of American History, the New Orleans Museum of Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston. His photographs have been printed in the New Yorker, the Southern Review and the Oxford American magazines.