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O'Kane Gallery​​


Kathy Vargas

Este Recuerdo / About Memory

September 8 - October 13, 2022

Participating Spaces: Fotofest Biennial 2022

Please join us Wednesday, September 28 
Reception: 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.​
Artist Gallery Talk: 6:00 p.m.


In conjunction with FotoFest Biennial 2022, Este Recuerdo/About Memory is a survey of photography from the 1970s to the present by San Antonio native and resident Kathy Vargas. Using film and a dark room, Vargas creates multiple-exposure prints that are ethereal and intimate, often incorporating social observations or cues from history, including ancestral ties to Mexico and recognition of pre-Columbian cultures. The artist's multi-layered photographs express the idea of simultaneous time, perhaps suggestive of the fluidity of memory. The effect achieved has often been described as magic realism.

Vargas writes,
"Most photographers spend their time looking for “good light.” Some travel thousands of miles to find it. Do any of us think about “good darkness?” It’s the contrast of shadow that creates “good light,” whether that contrast is physical, spiritual, intellectual, metaphorical, psychological, external, internal, and all the rest. We try to balance our lights and darks, but any balance is fleeting. Then the light changes. Pictures are the record of the light (and darkness) we’ve seen. This is my diary."

Vargas’ career includes an international exhibition record and acquisitions of her art into numerous private and public collections, including the Smithsonian Museum of American Art. Influences include Mel Casa and the Con Safo group, which opened her eyes to Latinx art. Important touring group exhibitions include Chicano Art: Resistance and Affirmation organized by UCLA’s Wright Gallery (1990) and the Corcoran Gallery’s Hospice: A Photographic Inquiry (1996). Vargas is currently Professor of Art at University of Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas.


Last updated 9/21/2022 7:03 AM