Mickey Smith



August 30 – October 28, 2008

The exhibition “Collocations” features a selection of works from “Volume”, an ongoing project documenting bound periodicals and professional journals in public libraries. Most of these publications are being replaced by their online counterparts. Several titles photographed in the process of this project have been destroyed. Searching endless rows of these utilitarian texts, I am struck by the physical mass of knowledge and tenuousness of printed works as they fade from public consciousness.

The act of hunting for and photographing these objects is fundamental to my process. I do not touch, light, or manipulate the books and words – preferring to document them as found in the stacks, created by the librarian, and positioned by the last unknown reader.

The irony and graphic quality of repeating titles fascinate and draw, no matter how mundane, from known to obscure, from Vogue to Blood. I focus on simple, provocative titles that transcend the spines on which they appear.

–  Mickey Smith, 2008

Born in Duluth, Minnesota, Mickey Smith earned her BA in Photography from Minnesota State University Moorhead in 1994. Her work has been shown in such diverse spaces as Invisible-Exports, New York; Ellen Curlee Gallery, St. Louis, MS; Carlton College Gould Library, Northfield, MN; Open Book Gallery, Minneapolis, MN; and the Post Office and Public Library of Cooperstown, ND.  Her imagery has also exhibited abroad in St. Petersburg and Vyborg, Russia as well as Pingyao, China.  Additionally, Smith has received the McKnight Artist Fellowship for Photography as well as grants from Forecast Public Art Affairs and CEC ArtsLink, and has held residencies at the Society for Contemporary Photography, Kansas City, MO and the Oberholtzer Foundation, Mallard Island, MN.  In November 2008 she will have her first solo exhibition in NYC at Invisible-Export Gallery. Smith currently lives and works with her husband in NYC.