Photos by Jared William Christensen
Reception: Sat, Nov 9, 4–5pm
I have always had a fascination with the night. When I was a child, the night terrified me. I was positive that something lurking within the darkness was waiting to ambush me. As an adult, I find myself waiting for the night. Something about the darkness now brings me comfort. The dark of night shrinks the world, and makes it more personal. Nighttime has a profound effect on sensory experience; vision becomes limited, sound carries and even the smallest snap of a twig cracks through the air, the atmosphere feels denser and the night even has a different smell than the day. My work explores that fascination. In my work, blackness has a physical presence that moves beyond obscure darkness. Shadows are not submissive to the light. At the same time, some work is about artificial light that eradicates the darkness of night. Images of storefronts and window displays taken in the middle of the night embrace the irony of an elaborate world of advertisement and invitation that has been constructed for a nonexistent audience. My process draws inspiration from two specific styles of expression. I use high speed black and white film in order to recreate the grittiness of early film, and I work in low light, high contrast situations to speak specifically to the aesthetic of Film Noir. I want to use the feel of those films to express something universal about the world in the depths of night. My subject matter rises out of, and attempts to move beyond the New Topographics movement. I treat the city as a landscape and try to capture it in its ‘pristine’ condition, when people aren’t present.
Jared William Christensen was born and raised in Ogden, Utah. He began studying photography in high school, and quickly decided that he wanted to pursue art for his education. After high school, Jared moved to Salt Lake City to attend Westminster College; he graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in May of 2012. He spends a considerable amount of time studying art history, film, and existential philosophy; all of which contribute to his artistic vision. Jared’s work acknowledges the artistic lineage that it emerges from and his aesthetic speaks to the early days of cinema, particularly Film Noir. Through his work, Jared explores his relationship to other people, and to his immediate and extended environments. While photography remains his primary focus, Jared has developed a passion for painting and mixed media, feeling that each medium allows him to communicate different aspects of his philosophy.
Location: Day-Riverside Branch
Contact Information: (801) 594-8632