Home Moorestown News ‘The Pain, Boredom and Euphoria of Looking’

‘The Pain, Boredom and Euphoria of Looking’

Moorestown’s Perkins Center hosts photography exhibition

Special to The Sun: “Package,” by artist Joseph Podlesnik, is on display in his exhibition, “The Pain, Boredom and Euphoria of Looking,” at Moorestown’s Perkins Center for the Arts.

Moorestown’s Perkins Center for the Arts is featuring artist Joseph Podlesnik’s photo exhibition “The Pain, Boredom and Euphoria of Looking” through late August.

Podlesnik notes that his intent with the exhibition is to select photographs that were captured with some physical discomfort but also to create formal order; unity; mood; and complexity, while in many cases engaging the viewer in a particular visual activity. 

“I like to engage the viewers from one edge of the composition of the photograph onto the other,” he explained. “ … I like to take photographs that make the viewer search and kind of sort out what they’re looking at.” 

“I don’t like when things are too easily spelled out.”

According to his official website, Podlesnik trained mainly in drawing and painting and has a bachelor’s in fine arts from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s from Cornell University. His works have been shown in more than 70 exhibitions around the country, and he currently teaches at Stockton University and Cornell. 

“Immediately after graduating with the MFA (master’s in fine arts), I started teaching drawing and painting at the college level,” Podlesnik recalled. “It was really when I started using photography to teach my students about design that I started capturing my own photographs.”

For Podlesnik, the camera lens depicts perspective too easily, which is why he captures and makes photographs that often frustrate readable, perspectival space. He sees photography and pictures not only as documentation, but as commenting on or reenacting perception itself.

“ … I try to be as keenly aware of what exactly is appearing in the foreground of (my) photographs, in the middle ground and the background, almost as if I was physically placing the elements there myself,” the artist said.

Special to The Sun: Photographer Joseph Podlesnik’s “Thicket” is also on display as part of the Perkins Center exhibition of his work.

Although Podlesnik lives in Phoenix, he looks forward to attending the opening reception at Perkins on July 16 and seeing what people feel as they view his collection.

“I hope that, for them, maybe I’ll influence the way they see the world around them,” he noted. “I like to think that I seek to tear away or pull aside the veil of familiarity.”

Podlesnik described what he hopes to explore when he goes back home.

“Something that’s been haunting me, that’s been nagging me is, I know that Phoenix is a very sunny place, there’s no lack of light here,” he observed. “But there’s a part of me that wants to purposely go in the face of all that light and use a flash on my camera.”

“Talk about utter redundancy, but I might take outdoor photographs of bright sunny, shiny Phoenix using a flash on my camera,” Podlesnik added. “The last thing Phoenix needs is a ‘flash’ unit for pictures, but that in itself is kind of what attracts me to it.”

Podlesnik has advice for artists interested in a photography career.

“For starters, I would say to study other photographers’ work,” he advised. “ … I’ve found that it’s easier to photograph from someone else’s interpretation of reality than from reality itself.”

Podlesnik’s exhibition continues through Aug. 26.

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