The Robin Rice Gallery announces a solo photography exhibition by Pete Kelly. The opening reception will be held September 22, 2010 with the show running through October 31, 2010.’
Pete Kelly's latest show evokes memory through strong associative, emotional and surreal imagery—stretching reality toward a timeless fantasia. Through his collection, Kelly invites viewers to not only the bear witness to the moments he has captured in frame, but provides tangible windows of access in each piece, rousing their faded cache of memories and permitting them to relive each experience as if it were their own.
Throughout his show, Kelly highlights the natural body language of the subjects' captured actions of the foreground, contrasting these with the shapes of the background, as in the invitation piece “Penny Farthing,” the blurred people on the street and buildings flanking the solitary protagonist. The subject is a man riding a big wheel bike from the 1880’s and with the angle of the shot the man appears larger-than-life, perched precariously atop the giant wheel, yet casually and confidently pedaling to his destination. While taken in 2007 in Lluadudno, Wale, this image appears as if from another time or from memory, leading the viewer to wonder whether they have seen this man in their own lives, or only in this collection.
As a photographer, viewers are regularly surprised to learn Kelly shoots digitally and not on film, as his work reflects a more whimsical, dreamy and romantic tone, contrary to the typical enhanced or “cold” images that are often associated with digital artistry. Kelly employs a mixture of single and layered photographs, using Adobe Photoshop to composite the images into a single experience and varnishing each piece to finalize the finish.
In another image “The Palio,” Kelly has captured the training day for the historical horse race that takes place in Siena, Tuscany twice every summer. The image of four bareback horseman, breaking around the curve of the track is a montage of images; Kelly has digitally overlapped and aligned each, individual image so the end result is a single, seamless photograph of the Tuscan race to the finish.
Kelly's fascination with photography, the quality, and flexibility of the medium began at a very early age. Born in England in 1966, grew up in West Germany. After leaving school he enrolled in a photography course with the Royal Air Force Photographic Unit, based in Wildenrath, Germany. Although this initial training lasted only six months, it established a life long passion and dedication to photography. Already an avid traveler, Kelly initially decided to return to the UK, to study Graphic Design and Advertising at Stockport College, before moving to America in 1987. After completing an Internship at an innovative commercial photography studio in the United States, worked as a Photographers Assistant; working closely with a range of photographers allowed him to intrinsically develop his own refined sense of aesthetic as well as develop and master photographic theory and technique.
Pete is scheduled to teach the Photo Encaustic process at Applied Arts School for the Arts, in Amagansett, NY, Monday, September 20 through Friday, September 24. For more information on this workshop please visit www.appliedartsschool.com or call (631) 267-ARTS. About Photo Encaustic: Photo Encaustic combines the ancient practice of mixing Beeswax and Damar resin.
This is Pete Kelly’s fourth solo show.