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SIGNS, SYMBOLS & SURFACES: PHOTOGRAPHS BY LEE SALOUTOS
September 12, 2020 @ 10:00 am - November 15, 2020 @ 5:00 pm
There’s a perverse attraction to abandoned sites and tumbledown buildings that has long made them a favorite subject for artists. From the melancholic vistas of eighteenth-century printmaker Giovanni Piranesi to the haunting non-buildings of contemporary sculptor Rachel Whiteread, ruins have frequently appeared as allegories for human instability, loss, and the inexorable passage of time. It doesn’t hurt that the subject also tends to offer up unexpected colors and textures, as the operation of damage and decay reveals aspects of their makeup that are ordinarily hidden from view.
In the photographs of Lee Saloutos, the visual and symbolic power of such places is further enhanced by the artist’s ability to foreground striking contrasts between the quality of light within a given space and what we know of its history. Saloutos conjures a remarkable and affecting composite portrait of the American nation in context, and a panorama of a world that is always interlinked in time and space. In so doing, Saloutos constructs ongoing, open-ended visual narrative surrounding architecture, society, and the natural world.