Clayton Ross McDougall is a photographer and filmmaker who resides between his beautiful home state of Montana and the varied desert vistas of the American southwest. His work is primarily focused on pastoral imagery with a modernist, abstract flair. As a photographer, he prefers the use of analog cameras, as he appreciates the dreamlike quality of celluloid and the meditative process it facilitates. As a filmmaker, he creates simple narratives with an absurdist, dry sensibility.
Snowbirds is a series of double-exposure landscapes created entirely in-camera on 35mm. It was photographed between Fall 2018 and Spring 2019, in northwest Montana and southwest Utah. The images chosen for this collection were selected with special attention to both their aesthetic coherence and level of synchronicity. Besides a brief description of where each roll of film was exposed, no other notes were taken to guide the transmogrification process. The final result is a set of surreal vistas that playfully collapse time and space to question the permanence of our natural environment.
Opening reception July2
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
“As a child, art seemed to elude me. I always felt there was another who was more talented, more gifted, and more in tune with their artistic sense. However, as I got older, this negative self observation began to slip as I garnered attention and compliments from peers and elders. I’m not one to revel in the praise of others (at least I try not to be), but I quickly realized the art can reside in concept rather than in talented rendition.
Art became a way to express the intangible... a way to cope with my existence. It gave rise to new thoughts and gave preexisting thoughts a stage to stand upon. It became a platform to voice abstract ideas, concepts, and grievances to the outside world. Beyond that, it constructed a bridge between my subconscious and conscious mind. It allowed me, and hopefully the viewer, a glimpse into the innermost workings of my mind. A view of that which happens unbeknownst to me.
Touching upon status quo’s of our time, agendas of the privileged, and histories of the ‘victors’, my expressionistic markings and words seek to incite conversation and create internal dialogue, all while keeping a wary eye on the pesky human tendency of ego.
But, don’t let me tell you what it all is, we have enough of that already. “