The Robin Rice
Gallery is pleased to present "Echo and Convergence," a photographic exhibition
by Benjamin Heller. The opening reception will be held on Wednesday, January 11th
from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. The show will run through February 26th, 2016.
In his latest show,
Benjamin Heller invites us to enter a poetic space of echo and convergence. As
a photographer, sculptor, and performer, movement is key in this
body of work, that is punctuated by self portraits selected from the series
"The Long Walk: Analog Narratives". This
series features pieces collected over an extended period of time spent traveling.
It is a window to the interior landscapes he seeks to find reflected in the
world, to contain a sense of this intimate vastness. All of the images can be
viewed as variations on a self-portrait.
The places of intimacy and sense
of vastness contained in the photographs can convey a
sense of transport that enhances the viewer's visual experience. The
"echoes" we find in the show reside in multiplicities of human
and physical forms, rolling natural curves, and animals in flight;
all intended to provide a resonance with the
contours of earth, water, and wind. The result is an array of images
captivating in themselves, but also given new meaning
in the context of Robin Rice's skillful curatorial arrangement.
Her intuitive placement
creates a graphic narrative for the viewer to follow and
decipher, encouraged by the convergence of the poetic titles of the works.
Traces of poetry,
sculpture, the lines of the body, lived experience are also evoked in Heller's
photographs, in movement and action. He also finds inspiration in photographer
Duane Michals' framing of expressive narratives, and
in Sally Mann's felt sense of powerful physical presence. Photographer Miranda
Penn Turin, in reviewing the exhibition, said "I can almost hear a soundtrack, and it's the sound of wind".
The invitational image is entitled "Fall," a
graceful figure, suspended in a glowing arc, light streaming upwards, eyes
closed in rapture. This light sits in contrast to the infinite shadow of the black background,
conjuring a certain atmosphere. Heller believes that it is shadows that allow
the viewer to reside in the experience – this image does just that. These
imagined environments speak to our converging lives and the echoed moments we
experience, embodying for each viewer, just what Benjamin Heller connects with while photographing.
Another view of self portraiture at
the front sign in desk, is an image reading, "and the soul wanted to move,"
between the keys of a typewriter. This show is a mirror of a desire to move. The black & white images capture
simultaneously this movement and stillness, asking us to pause between the
natural forces that rise and fall. Heller employs multiple-exposure and a fixed
4x5 camera to set a stage for a female figure flowing across the moss and rock of
a waterfall in "Reaching". The cavernous rocks in the background contrast with
the ghostly greys and whites of the body. She can be seen treading multiple
positions along a serpentine path – thus the converging self, and a
looking glass to enter the imagination.
Benjamin Heller has exhibited his photography,
video, and sculptural performance work
at the Baryshnikov Arts
Center, Brooklyn Museum, Wave Hill, New York Live Arts, ICP International
Center of Photography, Robin Rice Gallery, Cheryl Hazan
Gallery, Fresh Window, Eyebeam, New York Foundations for the Arts, and Honey
Space Gallery in New York. In 2013, he was selected for the Bronx Museum AIM
residency program and Biennial Exhibition.
This is his first solo show . To view the exhibition go to www.robinricegallery.com
*poem below was created from the installation of the room order of Heller's titles in the exhibition.
Echo & Convergence
...and the soul wanted
through the line of a call note
gasp, on a path of vastness
waves rise and fall
of convergence through
echo rivers, leaves of grass