May 11 - June 16, 2007
JOY CHRISTIANSEN: Domestic Encounters
E-J MAJOR: Marie Claire R.I.P.
Friday, June 22, 2007
from 6 - 8 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Dallas, TX: For the first time since opening its doors in 1995, PDNB Gallery is presenting an installation exhibition. This is the focus of the new gallery space, to open the exhibition parameters to more photo-based art and installations in addition to traditional photography.
Joy Christiansen, an MFA graduate of Texas Woman's University, created the installation that will be featured in the front gallery. Her subject matter is family secrets, particularly dealing with eating disorders. Her "Family Gathering" series is interactive. Joy The viewer is invited into what looks like a living room. There is a sofa, some chairs, a coffee table, a writing desk, a china cabinet. Each family member can be found seated on the furniture through the process of photo transfer onto the cushions. Text is wo-ven into the cushion, expressing the unspoken words about the eating disorder illness in the family.
As the viewer continues through the installation there are items that may be handled to find hidden messages. These are words that express disturbing thoughts the illness creates.
Along with the Family Gathering installation, PDNB Gallery will exhibit Joy Christiansen's photographs from an earlier series, Hidden Secrets. These nude self- portraits were taken in confining spaces, places that a child would hide. This search for tiny hiding places becomes awkward for the adult body. The search alludes to the adult trying to fit in her new world and her adult body.
E-J Major has also done self-portraits, more in the manner of Cindy Sherman. Her brutal series, Marie Claire R.I.P., shows the downfall of a young woman in twelve self-portraits. It is not clear what has caused the fourteen-year demise, perhaps it was drug related. An article that Marie Claire published about an anonymous woman who eventually died from heroin addiction inspired Ms. Major. They posted mug shots of the woman showing her physical deterioration. It was meant to educate and deter drug use among its readership. Instead, the artist found it invasive of the woman's privacy. The resulting series portrays herself as the anonymous victim, becoming a performance as well as a photo document.
E.J. Major lives in London, she received her BA in photography at Nottingham Trent and more recently has studied Film at the University of Exeter. Her work has been exhibited in galleries within the U.S., Canada and Europe. Publications include the British Journal of Photography, Artinvestor, and Fotograf.
This is the first time PDNB Gallery has exhibited these artists.
Joy Chritiansen, Installation view 1, Mixed Media Furniture, 2005 2007