Ernesto Pujol: Walk #1

Ernesto Pujol—Walk #1
August 25-October 23, 2008
Gallery Reception: Friday, October 3, 2008. 5-8:30pm, with lecture from 7:00-8:30pm

Light Work is pleased to announce our upcoming exhibition, Walk #1, featuring the work of Ernesto Pujol.

The black-and-white digital images in this exhibition follow a figure clad in a black robe, Pujol himself, walking through a Civil War cemetery in South Carolina. The photographs are arranged in sequential order in the gallery, depicting a dialogue between the figure, nature, and architecture. According to René Paul Barilleaux, “A lush Southern landscape, ornate Victorian cast ironwork, carved marble statuary, and other picturesque elements appear as a counterpoint to the dark, nearly motionless walker.”

Pujol conceived this series as a combination between a performance (the walking) and installation. According to Pujol, he had avoided going to the cemetery for some time, but “When I first set foot in that city of the dead, I suddenly realized that it was the familiar environment I had dreamed about for years. I had experienced recurring dreams of marble arches and colonnades surrounded by gated gardens and water.” After beginning to photograph the area in a documentary style, he quickly realized that he needed to walk through the space in a performative way, which resulted in the photographs depicted in this exhibition.

In addition to the digital images, this exhibition also features the black robe worn in the photographs, displayed on a mannequin in the center of the gallery, as well as twelve small, framed, hand-blown glass plates hanging on the wall with the images. Each plate has a word painted on it, meant to evoke a personal or emotional response from the viewers in the gallery.

Pujol was born in Cuba and grew up in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He received his BA in humanities and painting from the Universidad de Puerto Rico, and his MFA in interdisciplinary art practice from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His work has been exhibited internationally, and he has received numerous awards and fellowships. In addition, Pujol’s work is included in various permanent collections, including at the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio, TX; the Herbert F. Johnson Museum at Cornell University; Casa de las Americas in Havana, Cuba; the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles; among many others. He participated in Light Work’s Artist-in-Residence program in 1999.

Also on view at this time is an exhibition titled Images of a Girl, Images of a Woman featuring the work of Rita Hammond. A nationally recognized artist and photographer, Hammond (1924-1999) was a dynamic and greatly admired presence in the Central New York art community. With audacity, intelligence, and humor, Hammond’s work reflected on major figures from the history of art and photography. Images of a Girl, Images of a Woman offers a body of photographs from Hammond’s long-time collaboration with Lynn Moser. The series juxtaposes images of Moser as a young girl in 1967 with images of her as a woman twenty years later, revealing the dramatic and intimate effects of time, reflected in both the subject and the perspective of the photographer. Freelance photographer, curator, and arts educator Gina Murtagh has worked with Light Work and Syracuse University Press to publish a book on this series of images. On September 8 at 6:00pm, Murtagh will present a lecture about Rita Hammond at Light Work in Watson Theater. Her book,Images of a Girl, Images of a Woman , will be available at the event for purchase. The book is also available through Syracuse University Press Hammond’s series A Due Voci is also on view at this time in the Community Darkrooms exhibition space.

Light Work will host a gallery reception to celebrate these exhibitions on Friday, October 3 from 5-8:30pm, with a lecture by Ernesto Pujol beginning at 7:00pm. This event is part of the Visible Memories Conference, which is presented by the Visual Arts and Cultures Cluster of The Central New York Humanities Corridor, made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The Corridor is a large-scale partnership with Syracuse University, Cornell University, and the University of Rochester that connects scholarship in five other cluster areas: philosophy, linguistics, religions and cultures, musicology/music history, and humanities at the interface of science/technology. The conference will feature a screening by David Thorne, and plenary panels with noted scholars and artists including Patricia Zimmermann, George Legrady, Gregory Sholette, Phaedra Pezzullo, Cara Finnegan, and Andrea Hammer.   Pujol’s lecture is the keynote address for the conference, and the public is invited to attend the lecture and reception free of charge. For more conference information visit

Gallery hours are Sunday to Friday, 10am-6pm, and by appointment. To schedule an appointment, please call 315-443-1300. The exhibitions and reception are free and open to the public. Paid parking is available in the Marion Parking Lot and Booth Garage. Light Work invites groups and individuals to schedule tours and gallery talks of the exhibition and facility. Light Work is a nonprofit, artist-run organization dedicated to the support of artists working in photography and electronic media. Light Work is a member of CMAC, the Coalition of Museum and Art Centers at Syracuse University. For more information about any of these exhibitions, please contact Jessica Heckman at Light Work, 315-443-1300 or

*Digital Files of all press images are available upon request.

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