Each of these artists uses photography for conceptual rather than documentary, pictorial, or narrative ends. The works function instead as representations of ideas. Found and manipulated or re-photographed and repurposed, the images were often not created by the artists themselves. They make connections to the work of other artists and art historical periods, to vernacular expressions, and to personal experience, yet, they are not faithful records of past moments in time. Their meanings remain intentionally ambiguous.
The works or their funds were gifted to WCMA in the last year by generous donors—both alumni and non-college affiliated—who give to us because they not only want their collections to be integrated regularly into exhibitions but also to be actively studied by students and faculty. With this group of conceptual works we augmented our holdings of photography, already a great strength of the museum’s collection and the medium most consistently requested by courses across disciplines.