About the Artist:
Keri Cronan a photographic artist who explores the connection between subconscious emotions and how we experience them. Born and raised in Covington, Georgia, Keri received her BFA from the Savannah College of Art and Design in 2017. Keri has worked with several non-profit organizations such as Maine Media Workshops + College in Rockport, Maine and the Ossabaw Island Foundation in Savannah, Georgia.
She has been exhibited extensively in the South as well as the Foundry Arts Center in St. Charles, Missouri and El Minia University in Cairo, Egypt. Her work is also held in SCAD's permanent collection.
Keri currently lives and works in Atlanta, Georgia.
I use photography to express intense emotional experiences, diving deep into the subconscious mind where analytical thought meets psychological reaction. I am drawn to the spirituality of light and color and how they reflect my own understanding of what happens around me. I use all forms of analog photography, digital and alternative printing processes as well as mixed media techniques to express myself when words fail me. Ultimately, my work is what happens when I shut my mouth and open my eyes.
As Edward Hopper said, "If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint."
Read below the interview our Art Director, Finn Schult, had with the artist!
So first and foremost, what lead you to making this body of work and why did you feel that it should manifest in the form of a book?
Well, long story short, this body of work came from the need to explore my feelings about a situation that happened when I was younger. After suppressing it for years, I had a lot of pain that begged for an outlet. It naturally manifested itself into a photo album style book due to using my personal family photos as the subject matter.
Can you talk a little about your use of embroidery and the importance of mixed mediums in these images?
The idea to embroider family photographs came from my mother. She was an avid cross-stitcher when I was younger and I’ve always heavily associated thread and embroidery with her and my childhood. The different colors of thread are the the physical representations of emotions and memories. I combined that with other manipulation techniques such as burning and letter press to further emphasize different feelings. It was all very organic. I lived with each photo for a while, many of which I had not seen prior to starting the project, before deciding what to do with it. Its all very symbolic of different things, a lot of which I’m sure only a psychologist could explain.
This work is a lot different from the work you've been making lately. How did you get from Family Value(d) to some of your newer work like what we see in, I'm Sorry You Feel That Way?
Family Value(d) was very much a project that I felt like needed to happen before I could make work about anything else. I had all of these pent up feelings and traumatic experiences that needed to be let go of. I made the book and then didn’t look at for months afterward. It was an epic release of emotion and I felt like a new person after I was done with it, yet was very emotionally drained. The project I made directly after the book, Rumination, was a journey to find my creative energy again, a search for light after being mentally stuck in such a dark place. My search for light became the need to make my own in order to express all of these intense psychological ideas that were directly related to things I was going through at the time, thus the creation of projects such as In Light of Recent Events and I’m Sorry You Feel That Way.
Do you think you'll make another book any time in the near future?
Maybe! I like to let my work dictate its own presentation. Family Value(d) demanded to be a one of a kind book. We’ll see where future projects go.
Speaking of future plans, do you have any new projects coming up that we should be looking out for?
Yes! I recently spent the past summer working in Midcoast Maine, and have an in progress project in the works from my time there. I hope to share it fairly soon.