Learning to See: Photographs by Nancy Hellebrand
Michener Art Museum
October 29, 2011 — February 26, 2012
Learning to See: Photographs by Nancy Hellebrand is a series of subtly colored, large-scale photographs combining individual pictures of tree branches. Each picture is more an abstract meditation than a mirror of nature. First, digital files are superimposed to make one combined image, and then several combined images are placed side by side. The images are connected by form, line and color, creating a surprisingly complex view of nature. Some combinations are more obviously interconnected, while others are less so and may even appear quite disjointed. “Either way,” Hellebrand says, “the whole is different from the sum of its parts.”
Nancy Hellebrand has been exhibiting internationally in museum and gallery exhibitions since 1973. She was the first American artist and the first living woman to have a solo photography exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in London. Other museum exhibitions include Tate Britain in London; the National Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C.; the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia; and the Museum of Modern Art and the International Center of Photography in New York. Hellebrand is represented in many public collections including the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Princeton University Art Museum, Yale University Art Gallery, the Museum of Modern Art and the National Portrait Gallery in London. Hellebrand was born in Philadelphia and many of the trees in Learning to See are from Philadelphia and its suburbs.