The Robert and Elaine Stein Galleries at Wright State University will present two exhibitions and artist lectures exploring identity, gender and familial relationships from Oct. 10 to Dec. 16.
“Love Is Not the Last Room” by Anne Vetter
“Love Is Not the Last Room” features photographs by Anne Vetter exploring gender and attachment through intimate portraits of themself, their family and partner, and the spaces they inhabit. The images are personal responses to their individual experiences that contemplate queer family relationships and the tension between privilege and marginalization.
Vetter will give an artist talk on Thursday, Oct. 12, at 6 p.m. in the gallery, with a reception to follow.
Vetter, who lives and works in California and Massachusetts, is a queer non-binary Jew. Their work focuses on play, family systems, performance and the fluidity of identity.
Vetter also photographs and writes for magazines and newspapers such as the New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and the Washington Post Magazine.
Their work has been included in exhibitions at the Colby College Museum of Art, Humble Arts Foundation, The Curated Fridge and the Rhode Island Center for Photographic Arts. In 2020, they were the recipient of the Leeward Residency in County Wexford, Ireland
Vetter graduated from Colby College with theses in anthropology, art and poetry.
The Stein Galleries will also present a lecture and video, “Letter to my Father,” by Jess T. Dugan, an artist whose work explores identity through portrait photography, video and writing.
“Letter to my Father” is an autobiographical video exploring Dugan’s estranged relationship with their father. In the video, Dugan reads an undelivered letter to their father in which they try to come to terms with a difficult and distant relationship. The undelivered letter weaves together aspects of Dugan’s life, including their early gender nonconformity, family conflict, queer identity, personal relationships, desires to create a family and become a parent, and ultimately their father’s inability to accept them.
Through the telling of this highly personal story, the video grapples with two fundamental desires, often placed in direct opposition to one another: the need to live authentically and the desire for acceptance from others.
Dugan will give a public lecture, “Look at Me Like You Love Me,” on Wednesday, Oct. 18, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in Schuster Hall in the Creative Arts Center followed by a reception in the Stein Galleries. Dugan’s lecture is part of the First Year Seminar “Democracy, Diversity, and the Liberal Arts” speaker series, presented by the College of Liberal Arts.
Dugan’s work is regularly exhibited internationally and is in the permanent collections of over 50 museums, including the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, the International Center of Photography, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Their monographs include “Look at me like you love me,” “To Survive on This Shore: Photographs and Interviews with Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Older Adults” and “Every Breath We Drew.”
Dugan received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant and an International Center of Photography Infinity Award and was selected by the Obama White House as an LGBT Artist Champion of Change. They served as the 2020–2021 Henry L. and Natalie E. Freund Teaching Fellow at the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis.
In 2015, they founded the Strange Fire Artist Collective to highlight work made by women, people of color and LGBTQ artists.
Dugan earned a bachelor’s degree in photography from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, a master’s degree in museum studies from Harvard University and a master’s in photography from Columbia College Chicago.
“Love Is Not the Last Room” and “Letter to my Father” are curated by Benjamin Montague, associate professor in photography at Wright State.
Also on display at the Stein Galleries
“Outside/Inside: Selections from the Permanent Collection” highlights the range of spaces, both external and internal, that are aspects of human experience. The exhibition features more than 60 works of painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, drawing and video, including artworks by notable artists such as Peter Halley, Sandy Skoglund and Andy Warhol.
On display through Dec. 16, “Outside/Inside” is curated by Rebecca Foley, art gallery and events coordinator in the College of Liberal Arts.
“Ebb & Flow,” a collection of artworks embodying the essence of a Zen Garden, is on display in the Project Space through Oct. 28.
The works selected for “Ebb & Flow” evoke and inspire feelings of serenity and meditative practice as it relates to nature. Reflecting on the ebb and flow of the natural world, through its organic shifts in color, form and movement, gallery visitors might find peace.
Located in 160 Creative Arts Center, the Stein Galleries are open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Wednesdays and Fridays from noon to 4 p.m.; and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.