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Self Re-Defined
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In the current exhibition  Focus: The Self Re-Defined, artist Richard Olderman takes viewers on a
surprising exploration of the self and nature; a journey of self discovery.
Curated by Evanston Art Center Director Michele Rowe-Shields,
Focus: The Self Re-Defined,
Recent Photographs by Richard Olderman
presents 22 of Olderman's manipulated, silver
gelatin prints.  This handtinted series incorporates a group of early black and white
self-portraits taken around 1980 with more recent black and white images from nature and
cemeteries.  Olderman superimposes the two images and then applies a variety of creative
techniques to the print itself, such as adding color and toner or bleaching, scratching and
scraping the print.  His work deals with a number of issues such as confrontation of the self,
transformation, birth, death, coming and going.
" I have always had a fairly comfortable fascination with cemeteries and death.  Death in the
sense that it's the end of one thing, but is also the start of something new.  With this new series
it's like scraping away the layers and something new coming out of the ashes," explains
In Olderman's earlier portraits he confronts the camera by directly facing the camera without
pretense.  This process comes out of a need to document a difficult and unsettled time in his life.
" in combination with his more recent images, the results are stunning.  The handtinting is
exquisite, the images mysterious and provocative, " says Rowe-Shields.  "Richard's remarkable
photographs express the essence of self-portraiture as self discovery.  Through his personal
struggle and exploration of the self and nature, he portrays a layered reality evoking a spiritual
dimension and dramatically capturing his inner sense of being."
Michele Rowe-Shields