Curated by Dawoud Bey, The Human Presence exhibited work by photographers who examined the psychological, emotional, and narrative complexities of the human presence in photography. The six photographers in the exhibition devised very different strategies and methodologies for invoking the human experience. In doing so they afforded some insight into how the human presence, and the artist’s desire to describe this presence and condition to a larger world, can result in photographs that resonate in new, evocative and challenging ways.
The six artists in the show used varying techniques to construct their own interpretations of the human presence. Christine DiThomas‘ used both images and text to depict the human subject. With the aid of his computer, Benjamin Gest constructed elaborate fabricated narratives to form single compositions. Robin Hann composed an interdisciplinary approach that combined both musical study and photography while Jean Perkins used a more direct approach with large-scale portraits of heads. Dan Ramos used a large format camera and highly descriptive detail in his portraits of workers in the Sloane Valve Factory and Tone Stockenstrom used intimate portraits to examine the family structure.