|Matt Haffner, Talking to Strangers, silver gelatin prints (contact prints), installation dimensions variable|
September 9 – October 15, 2011
Opening Reception: Friday, September 9 | 7 PM – 10 PM
Whitespace is pleased to present Just Across the Tracks, Matt Haffner’s first solo show at whitespace gallery. The exhibition consists of a series of photograph portraits, sound recordings, collage works on paper, and a rotating diorama viewed through a camera obscura. All of the pieces depict life in the space between the city and the suburbs with references to Haffner’s personal experiences.
Talking to strangers is the central theme for the collage of portraits covering an entire wall in whitespace gallery. Haffner sought out his subjects in the streets of Atlanta, engaging with the people around him instead of ignoring those passing by as they made their way through the city. He used an older style camera with large film that took a few minutes to make an image. This afforded him the opportunity to start brief exchanges with these individuals while photographing them. This engagement sometimes opened people up to a conversation and to sharing surprising things about themselves. While taking the portraits, Haffner also made sound recordings that play within the gallery. Hearing the stories that his subjects shared and seeing this huge wall of portraits makes one look for the face that told the story. Haffner considers this the most honest work he has made to date.