Vicarious Encounters: Work by Matt Belk

March 4-28, 2011

Matt is a senior BFA major at UNL, and will be graduating in May. He is currently working on a site-specific installation of his work at the gallery, the majority of which will be painted and drawn directly on the walls. Matt has set a series of environmental and temporal constraints upon himself to see what type of outcome emerges when the artist is put under pressure to create. The exhibition will be unveiled at the opening reception on Friday, March 4, 2011, from 7:00-11:00 pm.


Privacy and the Plains: New Work by Kimberly Thomas

February 4-26, 2011

Our February exhibition of work by Kimberly Thomas was held in conjunction with the second Lincoln PhotoFest.  We had great attendance at the opening reception, and thank everyone who braved the cold February night to support the artist and our space.

Artist Statement

For this exhibition I am merging two bodies of work, Settled/Settling and The Plains.  The Settled/Settling images arose from my decision to stay in Lincoln, NE, after finishing graduate school.  This decision felt like a commitment and I was experiencing conflicting feelings of contentment and disappointment.  Contentment from living a stable, happy life, and disappointment from fear that I was settling for something less that I had expected for my life.  These homes and neighborhoods are indicative of the place and community I now call home, but they are not meant as documents.  For me, these images stem from a sense of familiarity and my questions about the familiar.  I find contradiction and tension in these photographs; they are simultaneously ordinary and bizarre, familiar and beautiful, inviting and foreboding.  These descriptions mimic my sentiments of the title Settled / Settling.

Right away I started noticing some of the iconography from the Settled/Settling photographs making an appearance in The Plains series.  The power lines connect the images in an almost literal way.  Another similarity is the ambiguity of the places depicted.  Landscape camouflaging and nondescript buildings take the place of fences and foliage that separated and obscured the domestic spaces of Settled/Settling, changing the vista through the inclusion of blank, geometric shapes.

I had thought that both of these series were an investigation of my surroundings, but it is clear that these images are more about me rather than a description of Nebraska.  For the first time in my photographic career, my images seem to be engaged in a conversation with one another.  I find myself wanting to see certain images next to each other.  My hope in exhibiting this work together is to further examine this visual dialogue.

About the Artist

Originally from Missouri, Kimberly Thomas now resides in Lincoln, NE.  Kimberly received her MFA degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2008 and she now teaches photography at Metropolitan Community College and Creighton University.  Recent achievements include solo exhibitions at the Midwest Society for Photographic Education conference in Kalamazoo, MI and from the Nebraska Arts Council and the Kansas City Artists Coalition.  Concurrent with this exhibition, Kimberly also curated an exhibition that is on view during February at Tugboat Gallery in Lincoln, NE.