Gothic Fictions

Jan 31–Mar 23, 2019
Silver Eye Center for Photography
4808 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

This exhibition features three artists whose work continues a lineage that can be traced from the gothic stories of writers like Edgar Allan Poe and Flannery O'Connor, to our contemporary cultural fascination with horror and true crime narratives. These photographers explore elements crucial to the Gothic: foreboding and ancient settings, villains who are at once human and mythological, and a sense of overwhelming, creeping, unstoppable fear. Dylan Hausthor’s Past the Pond, Setting Fires shows verdant and isolated New England forests that appear innocuous on their surface, but seem to hold something horrific in their depths. The woods are haunted and haunting, full of animals that evoke otherworldly spirits, and humans who teeter on the edge of madness. Rory Mulligan’s Sam I Am explores a history of violence in the Hudson River Valley. This area teems with dark tales—from the stories of Washington Irving and John Cheever to the real life horror of the Son of Sam murders—Mulligan darts between history and fiction. His stark and subtle images create a narrative of an elusive and evil masculine force. Tereza Zelenkova’s The Essential Solitude shows a figure who is either a prisoner or a recluse. Stuck in a room, alone, reading, and dreaming, she are completely shut off from the world. Though the room has a victorian sensibility, the decay around its isolated figure suggests a crushing amount of time has passed. Gothic Fictions examines how three contemporary artists play within the framework of the Gothic to create unique and palpable senses of dread.

Participating Artists

  1. Dylan Hausthor was raised in southern Vermont. His work has been exhibited and showcased nationally and internationally by Film Festivals, the Anamorphosis Prize, Photocopy Club, Humble Arts Foundation and select galleries. After graduating with his BFA from the Maine College of Art, he founded the art book publishing project Wilt Press in the Spring of 2015 and currently works as a bookmaker, photographer, and chief editor of Wilt Magazine from a small island in Maine.

  2. Rory Mulligan (b.1984) received a BA from Fordham University and a MFA from Yale University in 2010 where he was awarded the Ward Cheney Memorial Award. His work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally and is included in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Mulligan’s work has been published by J&L Books and Blind Spot Magazine.

  3. Tereza Zelenkova (born 1985 in Czech Republic; lives and works in London, UK) is an artist working mainly with black and white analogue photography. Her practice often deals with mysticism, ranging from abstract ideas about death and the sacred, to documenting concrete locations tied to local mythologies or mysterious historical events. Her inspiration often comes from literature and philosophy, but she also embraces coincidence, intuition and analogy as essential working methods.