May 24 – June 28, 1998
In the Human Nature series I have photographed human specimens and anatomical models from historical medical pathology collections, juxtaposing them with enlarged details from historical anatomy diagrams. In response to our culture’s desire to create a neat, ” sanitized” package out of the workings of the human body, these photographs explore my sense of wonder and fascination with the beauty, mystery, and complexity of the body.
These dissected and dismembered fragments are complex and disturbing, transgressing the boundaries between exterior and interior, public and private, and disrupting our vision of the body as a symbol of containment and wholeness. The anatomy diagrams address the fluidity and instability of both our knowledge about and conceptual framework for understanding the body.
No matter how much the body is culturally controlled and proscribed, it asserts its uncontrollable and illogical nature, its inherent messiness and temporality, and in fact we are fascinated by this. As John Banville wrote in a recent review of Frank Gonzalez – Crussi’s book, Suspended Animation, ” Death for us is what sex was for the Victorians: something that fascinates and frightens us, an inevitability that we do not speak of, a scandal that makes a mockery of our pretensions to grandeur, dignity, transcendence.” It is here where the uncontrollable, the insistent presence of lived experience comes up against the rational that I find the most interesting territory.
– Ann Lovett, 1998
Ann Lovett was educated at the Tyler School of Art of Temple University (MFA), and Skidmore College (BS). Her photographic installations, public art projects, and artists books have been exhibited in over 100 shows nation wide, including the New York Public Library, Albany Institute of History and Art, CEPA, Light Factory, Islip Art Museum, San Francisco Camerawork, Center For Creative Photography at the University of Arizona, Boston Art Institute, Friends of Photography, Creadle School of Art, and the Philadelphia Print Club. An artist as well as an educator, Ann has published 7 artists’ books, 6 of which were created on the computer. She has received several awards for her books, including an Artist-In-Residence at Visual Studies Workshop and a New York State Council for the Arts Individual Artist Grant. In total she has been awarded more than fifteen grants and residencies. Her work is part of public and private collections – Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, Brooklyn Museum, Polaroid, Yale University, New York Public Library, Kresge Art Museum, International Center for Photography, and in the Center’s own Permanent Print Collection. Lovett recently produced a multimedia electronic book, The Deluge and is currently working on 2 new book projects.
Ann has taught photography and book arts in the Art Department at the State University of New York at New Paltz for 15 years and has taught Adobe Photoshop Workshops for CPW since 1994. Ann has a particular interest in interdisciplinary work, and will be starting a new collaborative graduate program joining photography and graphic design at SUNY New Paltz in the fall of 1999.