September 25 to October 24, 2013
Ampersand is pleased to present Arrangements, an exhibition of photographs by Portland artist Clayton Cotterell. This new body of work marks a departure from his previous exhibition and publication with the gallery, Unarmed, which quietly chronicled his brother's transition from boyhood to manhood as a mechanic/private who served in Afghanistan. Cotterell's new approach revels in the spontaneity of the photographic medium, allowing for succinct encounters with light, color and form to guide both the content and open-ended, sensuous meaning of the work. Seeking out naturally occurring abstractions, the photographs Cotterell has made are global in reach, yet are not about any particular place. The simplicity of their titles attests to the easily recognizable parameters of their content: this is a pole, here is a telephone cord, look at this towel. Such transparency invites one to dwell not on a photograph's meaning, but instead on the organized complexity of the photograph itself, whereby an image that dazzles from a distant first encounter becomes endlessly richer the closer one scrutinizes its surface. The resulting sense of malleability that occurs with such viewing is heightened by the relational proximity of one photograph to another. In this, Arrangements allows for continual shifts in its own framework while deliberately referencing the continual evolution of photographic language at large.
Clayton Cotterell lives and works in Portland, Oregon. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has appeared in numerous publications, including issue five of Aint-Bad Magazine and Unarmed, a monograph published by Ampersand. Recent online features and interviews include This is a Cult, Phases Mag and Eye on PDX: Clayton Cotterell, an interview with Pete Brook of Prison Photography.
Photographs are offered in three dimensions, each in
an edition of five: 16 x 20, 24 x 30, 30 x 37.5 inches.