Unfolding Time

February 4, 2010 - February 28, 2010

Installation view, Liza Nguyen's "Surface"

Image courtesy Brian Foulkes

Installation view, display of family snapshots

Image courtesy Brian Foulkes

Installation view, An-My Lê's "29 Palms"

Image courtesy Brian Foulkes

Unfolding Time

Unfolding Time: Vietnamese Photography, Then and Now

Unfolding Time: Vietnamese Photography, Then and Now is an exhibition of Vietnamese photography by two contemporary women artists—Liza Nguyen and An-My Lê—shown alongside family photographs loaned to the exhibition by members of the Vietnamese community in Portland, Oregon.

The exhibition brings together contemporary photography and vernacular snapshots to create a multifaceted image of representation, place, and memory. Unfolding Time considers artists’ and individuals’ gravitation to the photographic image as an uniquely personal and imaginative agent engaging everyday life and cultural critique. Family photographs will continue to accumulate throughout the course of the exhibition.

As significant as the professional photographs in Unfolding Time, these family portraits and snapshots have been generously loaned to the exhibition by both recent and established Vietnamese residents of Portland, Oregon. Through an outreach initiative supported by The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Blue Sky invited Portland’s Vietnamese community to share their photographic stories—those that depict the difficulties of war, and the adjustments and possibilities of new beginnings and cultural transformations.

These images have been loaned from the treasured collections of families and individuals—precious objects that condense time and space, evoking the desire to honor, preserve, and encounter. In some cases, Blue Sky has worked with donors to reproduce or enlarge images. These shifts allow for the examination of photographs in a manner that speaks to the work of the contemporary Vietnamese photographers in the exhibition, Liza Nguyen and An-Me Lê.

Blue Sky extends its warmest thanks to Liza Nguyen, An-My Lê, Reed College, Sam Lee, the Blue Sky Exhibition Committee, Blue Sky Board Members Tom Champion, Ann Kendellen, and Teresa Dooling, The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, and the individuals and families that have loaned their photographs to the exhibition. Unfolding Time is curated by Blue Sky, Christopher Rauschenberg, and Stephanie Snyder, curator, Doulgas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery, Reed College.

Liza Nguyen’s photographs are on loan courtesy of the Consulate General of France in Quebec City, and the Association France-Québec, Canada. An-My Lê’s photographs are on loan courtesy of the Lannan Foundation.

This exhibition is generously supported by