PATRON is proud to announce the opening of Kept, Myra Greene’s third solo exhibition with the gallery. In her latest body of work, Greene extends her ongoing interest in portraiture by exploring the ways in which context and material enlivens the object. For Kept, Greene mined a group of family and personal photographs belonging to her grandmother. Greene selected and reprinted a group of photo booth images from the collection using alternative materials and techniques she developed based on historic processes. Her artistic practice acts as an intervention upon each image, leading the viewer to reevaluate the photograph’s value and meaning as memory objects. For Greene, this work comprises a rich, living archive that allows a reconsideration and evaluation of the historical context of mid-twentieth century vernacular imagery of Black American life. In her words:
“In looking through hundreds of my grandmother’s images, I contemplated past and lived life in new ways. These types of archives of Black interior life were not what was taught to me or shared in photographic histories, yet these images were a part of my own family history and home.
“I have kept these intimate and private images. They have kept their identity for themselves.
“For Kept, I selected a group of photo booth photographs from which I created ambrotypes. Images are transformed through the process of being translated into a digital negative that is later chemically printed onto clear and colored glass.
“As it is applied onto the glass, the image changes—becoming both delicate and fragile, strong and protective.
“Kept aligns with the conceptual framework I have mined over the last few years, as I consider the edges of visibility in art and photography. As I select materials and processes, and create images and objects, I consider how much can be played with or pulled apart, and how much information needs to be created for the viewer to see an image.”