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Stuart Rome: Oculus

September 23, 2023 @ 2:00 pm - November 30, 2023 @ 8:00 pm

Rome Bluto

Oculus by Stuart Rome
Solo Exhibition

Curated by Christopher Brown

Opening Reception and Artist Talk: Saturday, September 23, 2023 (2-5 pm)

Stuart Rome: Oculus is a solo exhibition of photographs made from with-inside
ancient, living redwoods and sequoias in the American west. These giant trees
are hollowed-out from millennia of lightning strikes and fires, and they form
apertures to the sky and the canopy above. Though hollow, these trees remain
very much alive and their charcoal dark interiors reveal strange shapes that
suggest a passage from one recognizable world to another that is like a waking

For Rome, every process in picture-making is a vehicle for considering
meaning. The choice of black and white materials simplifies chaotic imagery
into a form where a new visual order appears.
Rome places himself within the trees and uses the openings at the top as
apertures, framing the sky. For him, these works are not meant to be
photographic descriptions or documentation, but rather a catalyst designed to
transport the viewer from a recognizable world into something original and

Stuart Rome – Biography
Stuart has worked as a photographer since the 1970s. His interest in
anthropology led him to photograph extensively in Latin America, Haiti and
Indonesia. Rome received his B.F.A. from R.I.T. in 1977 where I studied with
and assisted John Pfahl in his seminal work, Altered Landscapes.
Rome’s photographic work of pre-Columbian art treasures as well as Haitian
and Balinese trance ritual became the impetus for his landscape photographs
of forests and manifestations of pantheistic energy.
In 2010, Rome traveled to Northern California for a camping trip. One day, he
picnicked in a hollow core redwood whose interior contained remarkable
patterns. He made a few pictures inside that tree and was stunned by the
results. This would become “Oculus.”

Rome was artist-in-residence at the American Academy in Rome, and was
awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 2015. His publications
include Maya: Treasures of an Ancient Civilizations (1985); Forest (2005); and
Signs and Wonders (2011).

For more information, visit The SPACE Art Gallery website and follow us on
instagram @thespacephl

Examples of prior press
New York Times – Art In Review
Art of The Ancestors: Stuart Rome
Artnet: Stuart Rome
TIME Magazine: Guggenheim Fellows

About The SPACE Art Gallery

The SPACE Art Gallery, Philadelphia, established 2018, specializes in fine art
photography and modern original jewelry and gifts. The physical area is
impeccably designed, with a bespoke jigsaw hardwood floor, a viewing bench
and natural lighting. In the curated collection of functional arts, the pieces are
handmade by artisans across the world. The materials range from wood to
glass and from silver to resin in a wide variety of price-points. The
photography captures realistic and artistic natural and urban scenes from
small to large in a variety of developmental processes. Stop in during our open
hours, request an appointment, or join us for a special event to shop, sit and enjoy the surroundings.


September 23, 2023 @ 2:00 pm
November 30, 2023 @ 8:00 pm

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