Courthouse Gallery Fine Art

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Jeffery Becton

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Jeffery Becton Inspired by the tidal reaches and atmospheric weather near his Deer Isle home and the summer homes on the Blue Hill Peninsula, photographer Jeffery Becton creates provocative photo-based digital montages, often playing with the borders between dream and reality, interior and exterior, abstraction and representation. His montages frequently contain architectural elements and objects from these vintage New England houses, many of which are part of his personal history.

Becton is a pioneer in the field of fine-art photography. Beginning in the early 1990s, the new digital tools allowed Becton to experiment with the layering of visual information. Using scans of his photography and other materials, Becton merged and manipulated these elements to create surreal scenarios evocative of that in-between milieu one inhabits when living by the sea. The layering of these elements offers form to visual ambiguities, reexamines the boundaries of mixed media, and creates altered realities that merge into images rich in symbolism both personal and archetypal.

A new book on Becton’s work and career will be launched at Courthouse Gallery on Thursday, August 20 from 4:30-6:30pm. Jeffery Becton: The Farthest House is written by Carl Little with appreciations by art writer and novelist Deborah Weisgall; Dan Mills, director of the Bates College Museum of Art; and art critic Peter Plagens. There will be a talk at 5pm with Jeffery Becton and an introduction by Carl Little.

“Becton’s works are meditations on ambivalence: digital montages, beautiful and unsettling mashups, altered realities. . . .Walls, floors, and ceilings open to the elements—and to the imagination. They provide a framework but no shelter; they are lit with the clarity of memory. What we see depends on what we bring to the act of seeing: what memories, what desires, what emotions. Becton is really exploring our own permeability.” — Deborah Weisgall, Jeffery Becton: The Farthest House

Becton’s work has been in numerous solo, group, and juried exhibitions, featured in national and international publications, and is included in many private and museum collections, including Bates College of Art, Farnsworth Museum of Art, and Portland Museum of Art, among others.