Carol Schlosberg Gallery
23 Essex Street
Beverly, MA 01915
Thursday, January 21
Using only atmospheric street lighting, Remi Thornton has developed a style that has been described as capable of capturing, “that emotion that has been chased by writers, poets, film makers, artists forever.” Titled after one of the prints in this exhibition, Free Air 4 You will feature recent works, as well as, two debut images from his latest body of work, “Ranch Camp” (2015).
Thornton’s first Digital SLR camera was delivered at the end of the day and as he was eager to try it out, his first shoot was at night. Since then, Thornton has felt compelled and excited by documenting the unstaged, quiet moments illuminated only by “natural” street lighting. The works portray a sense of anticipation – that either something doesn’t seem right or something is about to happen.” Because of this feeling of urgency and unspoken tension, Thornton places the viewer at the threshold of a potential mysterious or a thrilling encounter. Works in this series such as, Superette (2014) and Arlington Pump (2015), capture the calm, quiet sensation that can only be captured in the stillness of a mid-night encounter.
Thornton’s latest body of work, “Ranch Camp” came to fruition during a recent trip back to the artist’s adolescent sleep-away camp. As a camper, Thornton developed a personal connection to the forty plus acres of land during his nights wandering the grounds suffering from insomnia. He would frequent the picnic benches or sit outside of the boys cabins with his older counselors, waiting for the tiredness to set in. Thornton says, “Like most places, the camp had an entirely different personality at night… it would take on a distinctive look, sound, and feel once the sun went down.” No stranger to the mysterious and strange characteristics only legible at night, the artist says, “It made sense for me to return to camp and document the silent side as I remember it.”
Cabin 6E (2015) is a standout piece from the “Ranch Camp” series. At the forefront of the print is a quintessential rustic cabin, seemingly made of stacked logs topped by a weathered pointed roof. Using only the natural light around him, Thornton captures a truly magical moment in which a cluster of emerald green light radiates from off into the distance from the woods, at far left just behind the cabin. The color canopies the entire work, particularly on the facade of the tiny house, almost camouflaging it against the green grass and woods that surround it.
Remi Thornton has exhibited throughout the United States and his photographs have been highly collected by private and public collections including Fidelity Investments and Wellington Management. He was recently selected as a recipient of the St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artist Award. Thornton lives in Melrose, Massachusetts, with his wife and a heavily photographed Chihuahua/Pug mix named Winnie Cooper.