Eating Flowers: Sensations of Cig Harvey
“I’ve been lucky enough to have had many shows in the last 20 years, but none more beautiful than this.” – Cig Harvey
One of the highlights of the summer was experiencing Cig Harvey’s spectacular exhibition, Eating Flowers: Sensations of Cig Harvey, at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art (OMAA), which runs through October 31, 2019. Cig returns to OMAA on October 13th for a second lecture at the museum. The museum itself is a relaxed cathedral for art, a long interior space with high ceilings leading to a pulpit of glass, showcasing the Maine coast in all it’s glory. For Cig’s exhibition, this light filled space is covered with a decade of looking and writing, presented as a series of visual gifts to be opened and considered. Through a stone archway, Cig has painted a smaller gallery dark blue, where the walls beautifully juxtapose a set of jewel-toned still images and videos. Simply stated, it’s breathtaking.
Cig has deftly used it’s spaces to create an sensory experiential exhibition of over 80 works, complete with photographs, written words, and moving images informed by sensations of touch, taste, sight, sound, smell, and memory. Neon signage extends into the beautiful gardens that surround the museum. It’s an exhibition that draws you into worlds of color, nature, and the poetic visual and written narrative of her world and thinking. You leave feeling inspired and hopeful, and as the Executive Director and Chief Curator Michael Mansfield states, “There is a profound sense of life, optimism, and elation in this work. At a moment when the sensations of everyday life are hemmed in by social media or colored by political discord, Cig’s voice as an artist reminds us again of hope, imagination and wonder. It gives us time and space to remember where life truly is.”
Cig is a force of nature–her workshops, photographs, and books have inspired a generation of photographers. Her work is totally authentic, rooted in worlds she knows well, with a regard for the natural world and a highly refined sense of beauty and appreciation for all that life has to offer. She shows us the possibilities of elevating the every day to a place of of sanctuary, inspiration, and magic.
Cig Harvey (born: 1973) is a contemporary artist working in photography and the written word. Her work has been represented in prestigious exhibitions and published internationally, and she is the recipient of numerous accolades for photography, publishing and teaching.
The artist’s works have been widely exhibited and reside in the permanent collections of major museums and institutions, including the Houston Museum of Fine Arts; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME; and The International Museum of Photography and Film at the George Eastman House, Rochester, NY. She is the author of three sold-out books, You Look At Me Like An Emergency, Gardening at Night and You an Orchestra You a Bomb.
Cig has been a nominee for John Gutmann fellowship, the Santa Fe Prize, and Prix Pictet, and a finalist for the BMW Prize, the Karl Lagerfeld Collection at Paris Photo, the Clarence John Laughlin Award and The Taylor Messing Photographic Portrait Prize. In 2017 Cig was awarded the prestigious 2017 Excellence in Teaching Award from Center and in 2018 she was named the 2018 Prix Virginia Laureate, an international photography award.
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