Silver Eye Center for Photography

Through June 13
Tuesday – Saturday: Noon to 6 p.m.

The emotional and psychological terrain of personal relationships is explored in a new exhibition coming to Silver Eye Center for Photography.

Featuring photography by two contemporary artists whose work has never been exhibited in Pittsburgh before, A World Imagined: Kelli Connell and Sara Macel, is on view at the South Side-based venue through June 6.

Organized by photographer and writer Leo Hsu, an adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon, and Silver Eye’s executive director David Oresick, the new exhibition features Double Life by Chicago-based artist Kelli Connell (b. 1974) and May the Road Rise to Meet You by artist Sara Macel (b. 1981) of Brooklyn. As photographers, both women explore universal issues such as intimacy, identity, human connection and the complex nature of relationships.

A long-term project that’s now in its 13th year, Kelli Connell’s Double Life features 11 images that the artist has manipulated digitally. Equal parts familiar and mysterious, Double Life seamlessly combines multiple images of a single model portraying the role of two women—that have been altered in order to document the life of a couple. Inspired by Connell’s own experiences, as well as by metaphors found in film and literature, Double Life features several images that have never before been displayed.

A moving examination of her relationship with her father at the end of his career, Sara Macel’s May the Road Rise to Meet You presents a meditation on distances that can exist within families. As her father Dennis, a traveling telephone pole salesman, approached retirement, Macel was inspired to understand his life on the road and to also reinforce her connection with him. From 2009 to 2011, Macel imagined her father in specific spaces, traveled with him on the road for work and collaborated with him to re-create scenarios she imagined. The resulting tribute blends a daughter’s reverent portrait, the banality of work and familial bonds.