Opening on Monday, June 5th at Dathúil Gallery, curated and operated by Max Butoh and Lυcy (LucyDiam0nd), is Her and Him, the second in a two-part exhibition, featuring images by Hillany Scofield. The first part of this series, entitled Me_You, by Moon Edenbaum, which you can read about here.
The focus of the two exhibitions is the relationship between a man and woman, whose story arc runs from initial meeting through getting to know one another and intimacy, to drifting apart, and following on from Moon Edenbaum’s take on the man’s perspective on the relationship, June presents Hillany’s take on the woman’s view of things. “On a day like any other she walks into that little café on the corner. She knows it`s never crowded at this time of day. when she grabs a coffee and her favourite lemon pie on her way home,” she explains. “But this day is unlike the other days and this man is unlike any other she had seen around here. And his presence felt different to all the others….”
Through the 18 images on display, we’re invited to follow their relationship – which rapidly develops to one of intimacy – to the first hints of drifting apart. The lines of the story closely follows the overall narrative, but the perspective is a little different.
In both exhibitions, there is a focus on sexuality which suggests this is a relationship based more on physical attraction, of sating desires and pushing boundaries, than it is of emotional deep and sharing. Thus, perhaps it is one doomed from the start; after all, and to borrow somewhat from a classic film: “the passion that burns twice as brightly burns half as long”.
Within Her and Him, this physical element is perhaps given even greater prominence that with Me_You, particularly as evidenced by the images suspended from the ceiling of the gallery and on the upper floor. Again, the narrative is much the same as Me_You, but the greater prominence of images with a clear-cut sexual content perhaps underlines the fact that this is a relations with shallows foundations, and so doomed from that first moment of flirting in the café. Nevertheless, there is also a sense of regret presented here, in what I take to be the final image in the series, located above the entrance to the gallery.
In it, she appears to be slowly walking away from a café table – perhaps one outside the place where they first met – while he keeps his back resolutely towards her. There is an air of regret contained within it, her hand raised to brush fingers along chin as if in a physical response to thoughts of how it might have been different; his hunched pose suggestive of one resigned to the fact passions have run their course, his words would be unable to span the chasm now sitting between them.
There is perhaps a certain “sameness” between the two sets of images in these two exhibitions. In some respects, this is down to both portraying the same narrative arc; but it is also perhaps something more. By focusing on the same points in time, the same events, Hilly and Moon are perhaps gently underlining the inevitable run of this relationship, gently directing our thoughts on each series to the same closing words of the story.
Her and Him will remain open through until the end of June.
- Dathúil Gallery (Rated: Adult)