Kyle Seis: Abstract Truths
Back in mid-October Inova (Institute of Visual Arts) hosted the twelfth annual Greater Milwaukee Foundation’s Mary L. Nohl Fund Fellowships for Individual Artists exhibition. The Nohl Fellowship is awarded to a handful of Milwaukee area artists, both in emerging and established categories, and aims to provide funding to these artists over the course of a year. Today, I am pleased to share the work of one of the emerging fellows, my friend, colleague, and studio mate, Kyle Seis.
Kyle’s practice over the course of the fellowship focused on miracles and apparition sightings within various pilgrimage sites across the United States. His body of work, Abstract Truths, is both documentation of these locations and a visual investigation into proving indefinite concepts. It is clear that Kyle has a unique perspective on matters of divine interaction, shown not just through photography but also appropriation and found object, and in using these various approaches he is able to manipulate the narrative constructs of both myth and proof.
Kyle Seis earned his BFA from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2014, and is the recipient of a Mary L. Nohl Fellowship for Individual Artists and a Midwest Society for Photographic Education Scholarship. His work has been shown in galleries and institutions such as the Milwaukee Art Museum, INOVA (Milwaukee, WI), the Museum of Wisconsin Art (West Bend, WI), and the Center for Fine Art Photography (Fort Collins, CO). In addition, Seis is the founder of Wavepool, a contemporary art blog dedicated to sharing interviews with artists who engage with the medium of photography.
Abstract Truths explores the relationship between faith and geographic location, the ephemeral nature of presence, and the power of suggestion. These themes unfold at a variety of pilgrimage sites across the United States where miraculous occurrences or apparition sightings have been reported. While faithful visitors believe in the heavenly presence at these sites, the Catholic Church maintains a cautionary distance and often does not support such claims. These instances establish a delicate balance between fact and fiction, in which followers are told to believe the invisible while questioning the visible.
Through various photographic approaches and a series of objects, the work questions the ways in which expectations and desire shape perception of places and concepts that can simultaneously mean everything and nothing.
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