James Baker Hall, Red Morning, 1988, Super 8 video still
James Baker Hall
June 1 – July 9, 2016
Institute 193, Lexington
In the late 1980s, James Baker “Jim” Hall pressed pause on his photographic projects and dove into the moving image. Always most captivated by what was closest at hand, he shot countless hours of Super 8 film he used to observe the daily life inside and outside his home in Sadieville, Kentucky. These works build on Hall’s devotion to the intimate and the ordinary, found also in his poems. Though the imagery is of life in Kentucky, his films remain open-ended and connective. He turns clotheslines of wind-drying fabrics into visual poetry and fashions domestic narratives around single colors. Hall filmed his 1984 piece “East & West” from the passenger seat of a car, shooting winding, back country roads that are all undeniably located somewhere in Kentucky reminding viewers of a country drive they might have had. This footage is rarely screened and will be shown publicly by Institute 193 for the duration of the exhibition.
The late James Baker Hall (1935 - 2009) was a Lexington-born poet, novelist, photographer, and teacher. He received his BA in English from the University of Kentucky, studying alongside such notable Kentucky writers as Wendell Berry and Ed McClanahan. He would later teach at U.K and several other prestigious academic institutions. One of his close colleagues in photography, Ralph Eugene Meatyeard, was recently featured at Institute 193 for his photographs of Thomas Merton.
This exhibition has been organized in cooperation with the Lexington Film League; Institute 193 thanks LFL for its support. Super 8 will be on view from June 1– July 9, 2016. Exhibitions at Institute 193 are always free of charge and open to the public.