by Rich Kiley
The William Harris Gallery at Rochester Institute of Technology presents a collaborative display by 12 RIT senior photojournalism students titled “in(ter)dependence,” beginning with an artist reception from 5 to 7 p.m. this Thursday, Feb. 4. An artists’ talk is scheduled for 7 to 9 p.m. on Feb. 11. The show continues through Feb. 16.
The exhibition marks the capstone event of study for the students in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences (SPAS) at the College of Imaging Arts and Sciences. According to Meredith Davenport, an assistant professor in SPAS, the show celebrates the completion of a yearlong documentary project that is judged in accordance with the highest photojournalistic standards.
The exhibiting visual artists include Paige Beach, Tom Brenner, Kim Bubello, Colleen Cambier, Joanna Graham, Audrey Horn, Kristen McNicholas, Jackie Molloy, Nina Peskanov, Jessica Plance, Jordan Roth and Margaret Seward.
“Students selected the exhibit title as a way of expressing the increasingly interdependent nature of our world as well as the bonds formed between them as they each pursued their independent capstone projects,” Davenport said. “It has been said that nearly every challenge we face today—whether it be environmental, technological, socioeconomic, discriminatory or spiritual in nature—is global in character.”
Davenport explained that in a column last year by Thomas Friedman, Dov Seidman, author of the book titled, How, argued, “The world is not just rapidly changing; it is being dramatically reshaped. It operates differently. It’s not just interconnected; it’s interdependent.”
In “in(ter)dependence,” Davenport added that the 12 graduating photojournalism students “demonstrate the affirmative power of visual documentary storytelling to speak boldly and constructively about our world today.”
The projects explore a range of subjects related to the theme of interdependence “from the relationships bound by love between families—both natural and created—to the global challenges of identity and our dependence on a fragile and sometimes hostile natural environment,” Davenport said.
The students’ work is presented through a number of different mediums, including several multimedia pieces spanning across video and interactive website displays as well as books and prints.
Located on the third floor of RIT’s Gannett Hall, William Harris Gallery is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The gallery is handicapped accessible and all exhibits are free and open to the public. Call 585-475-2884 or go to cias.rit.edu/william-harris-gallery for more information.
Jessica Plance, Untitled, digital photo, 2016