Everywhere and All At Once
"My simple hope is that they expand your perception, so that you feel more connected to the world around you." -Kevin Hoth
The universe is formed by the four elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. Each of these elements contain its own unique properties, which work simultaneously to create one united universe. None of the elements are inherently good or bad, however, each has both positive and negative qualities.
We are nourished with food from the Earth, and eventually our body returns to it. Water is a life-sustaining nectar for us, which makes up more than 70% of our total body mass. Fire represents the body heat and radiant energy existing in all metabolic and chemical actions. Air flows throughout the body, helping all biological functions and feeding every cell with oxygen.
The Earth itself feels impacts from these elements as well. Water carves out canyons, beats away at coast lines, and smooths out every surface it passes over. Fire demolishes lush forests, regenerating soil for future health and life. Wind howls over mountain tops and sandstone, eroding away the land with subtle force. These elements exist constantly, all around us. They impact us and are part of us. Our current exhibition, ELEMENTS, celebrates these powerful natural forces in conjunction with Denver’s Month of Photography. Through varying elements of photography, from traditional silver gelatin prints to a 3D augmented reality installation, this group exhibition displays the four basic elements that command the natural world. Showcasing earth, air, fire and water, these artists attempt to capture the essence of movement over time through patterns, capturing the splendor of motion to demonstrate the forceful power that keeps us at the mercy of the elements. Featured artist Kevin Hoth speaks to his own personal journey with nature and the elements below.
Statement by Kevin Hoth:
When I was a young boy my family would cross-country ski through the woods together, paddle a canoe downstream, hike through a meadow looking for various birds. My childhood home had woods behind it, and a lake beyond that. This place was very instrumental in forming who I am. There were late evenings walking or skating alone across the ice when the lake would groan, threatening my safely. It could crack open, I could fall in, and no one would know. So you learn your limits; you learn to understand where the ice is thicker. Growing up in Midwest winters and dealing with overexposure to cold, one comes to fully understand how unforgiving the elements can be. The most beautiful things are also the most frightening. We should be awestruck. We should be respectful. My life in Colorado is an extension of my early life. I spend a lot of time with my daughter at the stream behind our house. We walk through the trees pushing away branches from our faces just as I did as a kid. We step on rocks to cross the stream, making our way to the hiking trail that will take us up to the foothills. We lose track of time.
From a very young age, I have felt most at home in the outdoors. It’s the only space where I can blend in and lose track not only of the hours, but also the boundaries of my body. It should not come as a surprise - in reality, there is no boundary, our cell membranes are permeable - there is no wall separating us from “Nature.” We have been led to believe there is a wall, which is why we find ourselves out of balance and disconnected. My images show an abstracted nature, but they also show connected spaces. If you look close enough everything connects - hence the title, “Everywhere and All At Once”. This relates not only to the land but to all of the inhabitants. We are just an extension of the land. We know this but we easily forget it. I often drive a car to where I make my pictures, so can’t deny my own role in polluting my own habitation. I don’t believe my images can “save the world,” nor do I believe that is their purpose. My simple hope is that they expand your perception, so that you feel more connected to the world around you.
As much as I do spend most of my life indoors - this is a fact that I often deny: the elements are there. We are made of them, no matter where we sit. Most of my work is a selection of actual light rays bouncing off the objects in front of me. I stand on the earth, I breathe in the sky, my eyes make rain, my neurons spark like fire.
Kevin Hoth | Artist Statement
Everywhere and All At Once
This series began with a question - How can I show the expansive space all around me in a single two-dimensional image? After some experiments, I realized I could use a mirror in the landscape to join the space behind me with the space in front of me. The series clicked into place when I joined the horizon line behind me to the one in front of me. In this way, I create a temporary landscape that exists only in the captured image. I use a circular mirror as a reference to the shape of the eyeball and the fact that all images are projected as true circles and then cropped by the camera.Natural spaces – those without overt human corruption – are spaces that fill me with peace and act as an antidote to our man made world of information overload. My desire is to show how I experience these spaces, but also to comment on how many people interact with them–via a phone screen. The mirror can serve to unify space, but it also show how we are sensing these places as visual fragments.