As part of my solo exhibition End of an Era: Past Identity/Future Vision
, I created an impromptu photo studio within the gallery, called The Portrait Project, and offered free portraits to all visitors if we came to a straightforward agreement. This provided a direct interactive element with the artist, creating an exuberant, living, photographic archive of the diverse individuals who represent the future of our community. This unexpected, inclusive element re-defined traditional exhibition practice, and captured both local and extended communities, visitors from all parts of our state, Boston, New York and visitors from as far away as Hungary and India.
The goal of the project was to create a direct, honest connection, using photography as a vehicle to help accomplish an opening up of communication and understanding, along with a new understanding and wider vision of ourselves.
A video was later created and shown at the local Drive-In. Permission for the song was given by the artist, and local artists donated their time and talents to perform for the soundtrack. A truly wonderful and uplifting experience. My heartfelt thanks to everyone involved. Also see: The Portrait Project - Library Edition Freelance portrait work What people said:
Let me tell you at the outset that you have opened a new 'self' before me. It was an amazing experience to be part of the project but more than that you educated me to the world of candid photography allowing me to explore the a face that unfolds several aspects: unprepared mood to flashing shades. It’s like a painting for me. Thank you for the initiative and wish you all very best for the project.
I had seen photography before but your exhibition introduced me to a archaeological narration through the journey of visual analysis in time/space. I realized how the place could be enlivened through a creative lens. Thank you again for the opportunity you allowed me to be in.
Thank you for being so personable and making her feel so comfortable. I'm looking forward to how the portrait project unfolds. Art and life offer so many possibilities!
Your photograph of me is absolutely wonderful. It’s the best picture I think anyone has ever taken of me. I’m a notorious photo-phobe and detest having my picture taken for a variety of reasons. But I love the picture.
First off I must say that I am honored to be part of The Portrait Project.
I think the photo you chose is great, and I approve of it's use. I must also declare that this, The Portrait Project is a wonderful and generous gift to this community. It brings a wonderful community closer together.
Thank you for the wonderful portraits. I usually try to avoid cameras, but had fun with you that day and I think the pictures show that. I agree that your favorite it probably the best, though there are several very close seconds to my eye.
My mom's 84 and my dad is 90. We all love this town and my husband is still trying to figure out why! Thank you so much for putting so much time into this project. We all love your idea!
Thanks! It’s fun to look through the portraits!
You were masterful in your community collaboration on your current exhibition.
We need more of that in town.
© Harrison Judd - Photographer