By ANEEKA RATNAYAKE
For The News-Letter
On Sept. 30, the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) will open two photography exhibitions as a part of its Campaign for Art. In the nearly 100 years of its existence, the Campaign for Art has received over 3,500 new gifts of art and is celebrating and recognizing these gifts throughout several exhibitions in the upcoming months.
These smaller exhibits will culminate in a larger exhibition titled “New Arrivals: Gifts of Art for a New Century,” which opens this winter.
One of the exhibitions, “New Arrivals: Photographs from the O’Neil Collection,” features 18 photographs, both in color and in black and white, donated by the aforementioned family. This collection focuses on landscape, and the manner in which humans have interacted with it, altering the earth’s ecology. Furthermore, the collection also features several portraits which explore diverse identities.
The curator, Kristen Hileman, described the collection as having both a range of artists and a range of techniques, all exploring the notions of sustainability and self through different means.
One technique featured in the exhibition is camera obscura, which was used by photographer Abelardo Morell to create his works. This is an old-fashioned photography technique in which he uses a large room to capture full vistas and landscapes, exposing the film to light over an extended period of time.
Furthermore, another artist, Brian Ulrich, brought together the two themes of this exhibition by capturing human portraits in the built environment.
Overall, Hileman described this exhibition as one that causes those who attend to reflect on their own lives and the way in which they interact with the world.
“[The exhibition] sensitizes us to looking to the future and being more sustainable in our actions,” she said.
She described this as tying into the diverse art that the BMA is trying to collect and show with the new series of exhibitions.