I recently discovered the work of Greg Sand when I was jurying the Griffin Museum’s 2oth Annual Juried Exhibition. The surreal imagery was at once familiar and strange and made me reconsider what I was examining. It’s what isn’t in the photograph that makes this work so compelling. An artist and photographer, Greg explores the issues of existence, time and death. He works primarily with digital photography to produce work that addresses the nature of photography and its role in defining reality.
Greg received his BFA in Photography from Austin Peay State University in 2008. He has won the acclaim of both jurors and audiences, winning numerous awards and honors. In 2009, Sand was selected by critic Catherine Edelman and the Griffin Museum of Photography as one of “the most exciting new artists emerging in the world of photography.” Sand currently produces work in Clarksville, Tennessee, and exhibits across the United States.
My work is about memory, the passage of time, mortality and the photograph’s role in shaping our experience of loss. Photography’s unique ability to capture a fleeting moment allows it to expose the temporality of life. “By giving me the absolute past of the pose… the photograph tells me death in the future… I shudder over a catastrophe which has already occurred.” These words from Roland Barthes’s Camera Lucida describe how I feel when I view a photograph so old that the subject must be dead. My response has a number of layers: I feel an immediate connection to the living person in the photograph, followed by a dread of what inevitably is to come for them, completed by a sense of grief over what has, of course, already transpired. This reaction is why the majority of my work utilizes found photographs, which I manipulate to create an abstract narrative exploring mortality. My work aims to question the nature of photographs and challenge the traditional definition of photography.