Dan Torop: Frozen Period
Opening reception: Sunday, June 14, 2015, 3-5 pm
Westward, A Picnic with Artist Dan Torop, Wednesday, June 17, 2015, 6-7:30 pm
Copies of the Dan Torop: Frozen Period catalogue are available for purchase online for $25 plus $5 shipping. Please use the "Buy Now" button below to make an order.
In a series of extended residencies at the Lynden Sculpture Garden beginning in the summer of 2013, Dan Torop made photographs on the grounds which integrate an historical text--Meriwether Lewis’s June 14, 1805 diary entry describing a day and night in the environs of the Great Falls of the Missouri River--with present day visual explorations. Mindful of ecologist Aldo Leopold's description of a nearby landscape, Torop responded to the passage of seasons, animals, and objects across the site, sometimes intervening, always observing.
Frozen Period refers to both a season and an historical epoch. Torop created many photographs during the winter of 2014, when the frigid grounds became an unfamiliar and difficult terrain. The harsh weather, the darkness, and the strict geographic limits of the project became important constraints in which it flourished. But all of the work Torop created was informed by a sense of the "frozen period," the time between the death of the sculpture garden's owner and creator, Peg Bradley, in 1978, and its opening to the public in 2010. During his months at Lynden, Torop sought out the interstitial, private times--early mornings, late evenings, nights--as ideal times to make work.
Frozen Period is both a subjective description based upon a year’s photographic work, and an examination of the very act of exploration and observation. Exemplars for this project include Chris Marker’s diary/documentary Sans Soleil and the poetic Americanist writings of William Carlos Williams, Paul Metcalf, and Charles Olson. Through rendering and modifying Lynden's spaces, Torop examines the tension between exploration and domestication, expansion and settlement, the “sublimely grand” and the “pleasingly beautifull” (Lewis, June 14, 1805).
The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication that will set Torop’s images to Meriwether Lewis’s 2600-word text, and will include an essay by Nicholas Frank that continues the dialogue with Lynden's landscape and history. The exhibition and publication will coincide with the 210th anniversary of Meriwether Lewis’s narrative.
More about Dan Torop's residency here.
About the Artist
Dan Torop’s projects deal with the subjective relationship of the land and its inhabitants. He has exhibited digital and photographic work nationally since the mid-1990s, including the solo gallery shows Alkali Desert (2013), Skydiving (2010), Snowbound (2007), Estimated Landscapes (2005), Lost Domain (2002), and Landscapes (2001). Some of his Alkali Desert images are installed at the Center for Land Use Interpretation’s Wendover Exhibit Hall 3. His publication Skydiving (2010, A-Jump Books), a sequence of landscapes and portraits, was included in the International Center for Photography 2013 Triennial’s photo books installation. His digital Ocean has been installed at the American Museum of the Moving Image and the San Francisco Exploratorium.
Torop’s work has been supported by residencies with the Center for Land Use Interpretation, the MacDowell Colony, Eyebeam, and Teachers College. He has contributed articles to Triple Canopy, Paper Monument, Modern Painters, and North Drive Press; and has curated or co-curated several shows, including A Rabbit As King of the Ghosts (2006), I Just Can’t Pretend (2004), and Reading Room (2002). Torop is an assistant professor in Florida State University’s Department of Art. He has taught at New York University, City College, and Parsons the New School For Design. He has been a visiting lecturer at Columbia University’s Visual Arts MFA, a mentor for the Art Institute of Boston, and a visiting photography critic at the Yale School of Architecture. Torop received a BA and a Gardner Travelling Fellowship from Harvard College in 1994. In 1997 he received an MFA in Photography from the Yale School of Art.