It was the first time standing in the middle of an art exhibit that all the eyes were on me. And I was forced to look back into them. Four walls of unfamiliar faces staring at you. At Patrick Pantano’s latest art exhibition, you are forced to look into the eyes of all sorts of unfamiliar characters. In his artistic statement he notes:
“To relax the subjects and try to bring them to a place where their expression did little to inform the tone of the image; to shoot them all with the same minimal lighting and the same film, camera, and processing to hopefully create some sense of similarity. That said they are all so different!”
It’s true. No matter how we try to compartimentalize people and things, what is it that makes every stare so unique? At first, the room is quite abrasive. How often are we so at ease to stare, this closely, into someone’s eyes? For most this experience is to be avoided. Presentations, family parties, bitter exes and prick bosses. But here, your purpose is to stare. By the end, you are among friends. After all that ogling, the stares seem so familiar, they haunt you and you swear, I’ve seen that person somewhere before. A party or something.
Pantano’s Exhibition, “Heads Shot”, is running from May 8-July 3, 2009 @ the CAID.