Perhaps no other photographer is as ubiquitously present at visual-art openings and performance premieres as Sean Smuda—particularly at those where extreme boundary pushing and experimentation are involved. It's his milieu, and one reflected in work like his "Dreams/Allegories" series, in which he placed denizens of the downtown dance scene (and other local artists) in a surrealist tableaux laden with metaphor and symbol. Richly produced and bizarrely palimpsest-like with their plethora of often savage allusions, the images solicited reactions best summed up in one word: discuss. This weekend Smuda exhibits a new series he's been working on for three years, "Blueprint." The series' 15 works, each of them 3' x 4.5', will commandeer the three-story atrium at the 801 Lofts with gray-blue, reversed monochrome images (think photographic negatives) of machines, objects, and buildings juxtaposed to generate provocative connotations. A plane crackles through the sky, trailing tendrils of words. A bicycle stands ready to race with the wind. A cell tower rises incongruously from a shopping cart. Each image is marked with a seal signifying its authenticity as art or artifact. Discuss. Also exhibiting artwork during this time will be Regan Golden, Val Frank, and Cris t Halverson. The opening reception is from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, October 16.
Oct. 16-Feb. 11, 2010