Exhibit clicks with viewers

SNAP!, a new exhibit at Union College's Mandeville Gallery features contemporary photography by five female artists.

The exhibit, which runs through Sunday, Sept. 28, on the second floor of the college's Nott Memorial, showcases the unconventional work of Sally Apfelbaum, Nora Herting, Katherine Kreisher, Melinda McDaniel and Lynn Saville.

While the photos from the five women record vastly different subjects and use a variety of media, it's the idiosyncratic methods and cutting-edge techniques of the artists that make for a cohesive show, according to Mandeville curator Rachel Seligman.

"Each of the artists are pushing the boundaries in terms of the medium and subject matter," said Seligman, of what is the gallery's first photography exhibit in more than a year.

Seligman said she produced the exhibit with Union's interdisciplinary art program in mind.

"Our shows are all about making a community, building bridges and creating a dialogue," said Seligman. "We wanted to create an exhibit of women photographers, but we wanted it to be balanced and diverse."

To create this sense of balance and diversity, Seligman sought out artists that blend the traditional with the cutting edge, sometimes bordering on the unusual.

Apfelbaum, of New York City, takes a decidedly contemporary approach to landscapes. She uses a large-format camera and layers multiple exposures onto a single negative to create images of nature that are dense and mysterious. According to Seligman, Apfelbaum often photographs a single location, developing 360-degree photos onto the same negative to create a desired overlay effect.

McDaniel fragments her photographs by cutting, tearing and shredding them. She then reorders and reconfigures the fragments into new images, creating a more immediate relationship with the final work.

Seligman said McDaniel's photographs are more akin to collages or sculptures than traditional prints.

"The photograph is just one step on the way to the completed work," said Seligman. "She's mixing the medium."

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