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The Photography of Charles Patrick Dagg:

A Retrospective

Exhibit: November 1 — December 22, 2007


Samford University Library hosts The Photography of Charles Patrick Dagg.

The exhibit consists of prints showcased on the main entry level around the grand staircase and on the second floor.

From the artist

"I was born in the Midwest and came to Birmingham via Washington D.C., Los Angeles, New York City, Providence, R.I., and Bar Harbor, Maine. A little bit of Mainiac and a whole lot of southerner, by choice. About half way through my stint as a zoologist in the Department of Biology at UAB, I took courses in black and white photography and then went on the teach photography for twenty years in Special Studies at UAB.

As I recall, my initial interest in 'black and white' came as a vague compulsion to produce a certain type of personal imagery, not necessarily original. As personal images, they were meant to be looked at, not chatted about. Like many other photographers, most of the negatives were discarded.

Several years into this pattern of rejection/acceptance, I began to notice similarities in subjects and techniques. As a zoologist, my world contains great amounts of messiness, but the images appeared to indicate a wish to create order in a disorderly world. To a great extent, the prints showed sharp focus, complete tone range from white to black, compositional rules of thirds, etc., etc. Too much sameness. After all, these 'rules of photography' are just notions, not commandments, to be honored or not. Of course, terms like 'messiness' and 'disorder' are pejoratives, so I decided instead to be positive and consider another biological concept: diversity. That is where I presently stand, using both concepts – order and diversity. Perhaps a sign of a split mind, which concerns me not."



Closing date: December 22, 2007

text provided by artist


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