Twelve color photographs at Drkrm offer more fuel for the identity fire that rages in us all. Self-portraiture in photography is nothing new, nor is the use of panoramic, "cinemascape" framing strategies or referencing Hollywood serial-killer cinema. In Aaron Hobson's epic quest to locate identity, camera becomes compass in the search to faithfully orient oneself toward an elusive true north.
This odyssey is understandable, given the artist's residence up there in that "remote Adirondacks region near the Canadian border." The photographs are technically competent and, thematically, point to movies like The Deer Hunter and Fargo, or classic art photography books like Robert Frank's The Americans or Joseph Kodelka's Exiles. Hobson, through his narcissism and obvious penchant for gritty dramatics, stripmines stereotypical notions of that chain-smoking, beer-drinking, psychopathic backwoods redneck "other."
A Long, Cold Night is my favorite photograph in this show. Huddled in an abandoned old car in the deep forest, Hobson lights a cigarette against the growing winter chill and lonely exile he has succumbed to. In this photograph there is no movie to remember or history to answer to. The psychodrama has fallen with the trees; only the artist himself and his rugged mountain stage remain standing.
Nov 18, 2008
just got emailed this review of the Los Angeles exhibit a few months back. This from Artillery Magazine (link here). I think the line that says "that chain-smoking, beer-drinking, psychopathic backwoods redneck "other" " is a rather interesting take on my work.