ART EXHIBIT “ON SEEING THE WORD” OPENS AT MGC
(Cochran, GA) – Artist Michael Carter’s exhibit “On Seeing the Word” recently opened at Middle Georgia College’s Peacock Gallery in Russell Hall. Carter hosted a Gallery Talk in honor of its opening for MGC students, faculty, and community members.
“On Seeing the Word” is a series of digital imagery that explores the Ten Commandments using images of hands and feet with the original text in Hebrew imposed over the images. Carter’s family works in building and creating tombstones, and Carter’s appreciation of text grew as he continued his education as a graphic design major in college. “I love text, and Hebrew is an amazing language because it has such depth,” he said.
Carter began using the Ten Commandments as an artistic subject matter 20 years ago when a group asked for an illustration of the Second Commandment for an art show. The resulting work, “No Graven Images,” is included in his exhibit at MGC. “I wanted to include at least a piece of what started it all,” he said. “The work includes the key word, ‘engrave,’ which reflects on my family history.” Over time, Carter’s work evolved from painting to digital imagery.
Other pieces in the exhibit include “Honor Your Parents,” which portrays an image of Carter’s hand holding a picture of his mother and father, as well as “No Other Gods Before Me,” which features an outstretched hand surrounded by bubbles containing objects such as money and clothes. “The bubbles represent objects that people put before God,” said Carter. “The bubbles also represent that these things are temporary.”
All of the subjects featured in the pieces are people Carter knows, including co-workers and students from Trinity Christian Preparatory School in Charlotte, North Carolina, where Carter teaches art. All the text was added through Photoshop, which Carter likes for its ability to manipulate images in unconventional ways. “You can do things that don’t exist in reality,” he said.
The images express only a small part of what Carter thinks the Commandments mean. “Easy is boring,” he said. “Fine art engages viewers in conversation and makes them think about its meaning.”
Charlie Agnew, an MGC Associate Professor of Art and the Peacock Gallery Director, said he enjoyed Carter’s work because it makes the viewer reflect on its meaning. “His work drew me in because it doesn’t come right out and illustrate what it’s about,” he said. “It makes the viewer stop and think about what it is and why it’s titled that way.”
Carter earned his Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design from Austin Peay State University and his Master of Arts in Studio Art from Memphis State University.
“On Seeing the Word” will be on display through February 24. Peacock Gallery is open Monday-Thursday from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m., and on Fridays from 8:00 to 12:00 noon. The exhibit is free and open to the public.