Gregory S. Hipwell, "Untitled", 2002, gelatin silver print

Gregory S. Hipwell, “Untitled”, 2002, gelatin silver print

Gregory S. Hipwell

Space is the stage upon which our lives take place. Public places and common areas are unique in that they are shared by all of us; we pass through them, occupying them temporarily before moving on. This constant ebb and flow of people means that an area can be alive with activity one moment, and empty the next. The emptiness acts as the turning point where absence reaches its limit and doubles back towards presence. 

These spaces are all designed to have a stark uniformity that discourages people from lingering unless a specific event is taking place. This reinforces the fact that these places act as containers for people and their activities, not destinations in and of themselves. They are intended to continually empty themselves as they fill with people. They are designed to be transparent, and although we pass though without noticing, they still have an impact on our behavior. Either we are kept moving past each other without stopping, or our attention is directed away from one another and focused on some type of spectacle. The effect is one of keeping people separate even when they are brought together.

Gregory S. Hipwell is currently earning his BFA at the San Francisco Art Institute in San Francisco, CA. Prior to his work there he studied at the University of California Berkeley Extension, and holds a BA in Psychology from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY. His work has been shown in San Francisco at the Diego Rivera Gallery, City Hall, the San Francisco Art Institute, and the LAB. He is a member of the core team involved in the writing and production of a full-length feature movie about the Mission neighborhood in San Francisco, which will premier at Southern Exposure Gallery in October 2003. In addition to his photographic work and film, he has earned awards of excellence for his work as a web designer.