The 2019 DOG Exhibition
Jurying an exhibition is never an easy task. Perhaps this because I know what it feels like to be on the other side. I know the sting of submitting work for an exhibition I truly believed I was right for, only to not be accepted. With this in mind, I would like to share my selection process, and a few thoughts on what I was looking for while jurying this exhibition.
Dogs are creatures I adore. I often wonder what it would be like to express myself with a tail, or long ears. I love dogs joyful spirits. I love their earnest and soulful expressions. I love their capacity for acceptance and forgiveness. And ultimately, I love the companionship of a dog. When I am in a dog’s presence, I feel a sense of belonging and unity, and for that I am always grateful. In jurying this exhibition, I made selections based on two components. First, I looked for portraits that honored the subjective things that I love about dogs—their exuberance, unabashed display of emotion, loyalty, and love. Secondly, I looked for images that were well composed, made use of light and color, and expressed something unique about the artist and subject through photography. The selections here have both of these two criteria—each photograph exquisitely expresses the qualities that endear me to dogs while also serving as aesthetically and technically sound photographs.– Shannon Johnstone
Shannon Johnstone received her BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and MFA in photography from Rochester Institute of Technology. Her project, “Landfill Dogs”, has been featured in national and international exhibitions and magazines, and was most notably on ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, and CNN.com. Johnstone’s artwork has been exhibited in solo shows in Chicago, Rochester, New Orleans, Raleigh, and Durham. She has been included in group shows throughout the United States, as well as internationally in China, Germany, France, Taiwan, and Thailand. She has been a Photolucida Critical Mass Finalist six times (2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2010, and 2009), and she is the recipient of several grants including two Culture and Animals Foundation Creativity Grants (2014 and 2019). Her first book, “Landfill Dogs”, came out in November 2015. Johnstone is a tenured professor at Meredith College in Raleigh, NC.
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