Press Release

For immediate release:

The Crossroads Gallery for Contemporary Art is pleased to announce its Inaugural Exhibition: Between Reason by Martina Lopez. Wednesday, March 27, 2013 from 5:00 to 7:30 pm. and the Grand Opening of the University of Notre Dame Center for Arts & Culture. The exhibit opens on March 18 and closes on June 21, 2013.

Poets search for a sensation and the words with which to voice it. Likewise, Martina Lopez seeks a vision in images of things more easily felt than seen: memories, origins, final days, and dreams. She creates a world of her own through the photographs that memories and origins are made of. Hers is a statement with a story of her personal journey and also of her medium. Although she grew up in Seattle, her parents were from Ysleta, Texas, and came to the Northwest via military assignments. She began exploring the theme of loss and change at the age of twenty-four following the death of her father in 1986. Photographs had been her substitutes for other missing parts within her family when she discovered pictures of her eldest brother, who was killed in Vietnam when she was only four. Other family pictures of vacations or road trips taken by her father became part of her search for her origins. They formed fill-in patches of a story, surrogates for memories she could not have experienced.

Lopez prints her digital images on hand-made Japanese rice paper. Each one is waxed individually to a translucency that gains vibrancy through careful back lighting. The image becomes an object and, at the same time, a delicate, ethereal scrim of light. As her prints have gained unity, her subjects now seem more settled in their places, but she and they can still feel displaced at times. Martina Lopez has found what every artist seeks: a way to possess her subject. From photographs that once served as borrowed identity, she has created a method of insinuating herself and her family into discarded portraits, giving back to the lost lives in those found images a heritage they lack in their anonymity.

Martina Lopez has been working with 19th-century portrait, landscape and digital media since 1985. Her interest in the electronic environment lies in the believability of the photograph and malleability of the digital medium. For the last several years, she has been interested in the idea of the digital one-of-a-kind image. Lopez’s artwork has been featured in such publications as Aperture Magazine and Naomi Rosenblum’s A World History of Photography. Most recently her work was included in The Digital Eye: Photographic Art in the Electronic Age by Sylvia Wolf and 100 Ideas that Changed Photography by Mary Warner Marien. Lopez has received several grants, including a National Endowment for the Arts Visual Arts Photography Fellowship. Her work is in many private and public collections such as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., and the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, Arizona. Lopez has been teaching at the University of Notre Dame since 1993.

The Crossroads Gallery for Contemporary Art, located in the Notre Dame Center for Arts & Culture, 1045 W. Washington St., South Bend Indiana, is free and open to the public Monday–Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Free parking is available. For more info, call (574) 631-5224 or email tsantos1@nd.edu.