Sandra Russell Clark: Juju
December 6, 2014 to February 7, 2015
Opening: Dec 6th, 2014, 6pm-12am
In 2005 hurricane Katrina hit our small town of Bay St. Louis on the Mississippi coastline destroying our home, studios and nearly all their contents… 30 years of work gone within hours. When I returned to the Gulf Coast and walked through the wreckage I was struck by how most everything had just disappeared but also by what was left behind…small items that told a story about their owners… a group of dolls or old tools, a rocking horse from childhood, stacks of old LP’s, odd still lifes of tchotchkes and bric- a -brac … all small pieces that were part of someone’s life… mementos, lucky charms, Juju.
This experience made me look at objects and images in a different way… I began looking at them as a cultural portrait which is both emotionally and intellectually anchored in memory. As I started to collect objects for this series, some saved from Katrina others from friends collections, the objects took on a whole new meaning…The objects become metaphors in the larger scheme of things…mourning and remembrance, history and culture, childhood and play, desire and longing. – Sandra Russell Clark
Born 1949. Lives and works in New Orleans, Louisiana. Sandra Russell Clark began her photographic career in 1978. She was Director of Photography at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans from 1980 to 1985. Her works have been exhibited widely in the United States and abroad in Italy at the 1989 Torino Fotografia Biennale Internationale; 1991 Braga Fotofestival, Portugal; Museum Ludwig, Koln; Altes Museum, Berlin, Germany; 1993 Museu du Imagem e do Som, Brazil ; 1998 Place du Forum, Recontres Internationales de la Photographie d’ Arles in France and in 2005 Stephanie Hoppen Gallery, London, England. Sandra’s photographs have appeared in Vogue, Elle, The Traveler and American Artist magazines and numerous publications on photography.
In 1997 Louisiana State University Press published Ms. Clark’s book of photographs, Elysium, A Gathering of Souls, New Orleans Cemeteries. Elysium received the 1997 Mary Ellen LoPresti Award for Excellence in Art Publishing from the Art Libraries Society of North America. An exhibition opened at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans that same year and has been traveling for the past fourteen years to galleries, museums and universities throughout the country mostly through the Southern Arts Federation in Atlanta, Ga. The 34 original images from the exhibition were purchased this spring by the Historic New Orleans Collection for their permanent collection.
Clark’s photographs are included in museum, corporate and private collections in the U.S. and abroad including New Orleans Museum of Art; the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans; The Historic New Orleans Collection; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson; William Benton Museum of Art, Storrs, Ct.; Memphis Brooks Museum, Tn; Guild Hall Museum, NY; Pennsylvania Art Conservatory, Pa. among others.