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Dorothy O’Connor: Scenes

Sep 6, 2019 - Nov 2, 2019
11am - 5pm

Scenes Artist Statement

My ongoing series Scenes centers around transforming spaces, often a room, into fantastical landscapes which frequently utilize elements of nature and the natural world to tell a story. Shaped predominantly by events in my life, my themes explore various personally meaningful subjects, both broad: such as animal welfare and environmental issues, to more intimate concerns like friends and family. Building these life-sized installations also allows me to literally live inside my own imagination, if only for a short time and satisfies the need to create a more aesthetically pleasing reality. Each project takes months to complete, allowing me to fully immerse myself in its meticulous details. I enjoy creating many of the components in each set by hand: crocheting the ocean, crafting hundreds of paper birds, weaving a ceiling of roots from jute, etc. Learning a new skill each time I build a new scene helps to keep the process fresh.

This work began as a photography project. The scenes are captured with an 8×10 camera on film and a photograph remains the lasting imprint. Opening the scenes as tableau vivants, however, installations which feature a live model, allows an audience to experience them as I do but to add their own interpretations and ideas, thus making the story a shared experience. —Dorothy O’Connor

Thank you to Edwin Robinson in memory of Pauline Katherine DiBella for the generous donation of Scenes

About Dorothy O'Connor

Photographer and installation artist Dorothy O’Connor graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in Literature and a minor in Studio Arts. She continued her education at The Creative Circus, a commercial art school in Atlanta. Her photographs and installations feature thoughtfully composed, hand-crafted scenes which combine elements of still-life, portraiture, landscape, and performance to produce unique and evocative works of art. In 2012, she was awarded a FLUX grant and presented her installation “Ceiling of Black Birds” as part of public art event, Flux Night 2012. She began 2013 with an artist residency at the Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art in Nashville where she built her latest installation, “Shelter.” Her work is included the permanent collections at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia, the Center for Fine Art Photography, Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art, and many private collections.

Featured Image: Dorothy O’Connor, Passage, 2017, archival pigment print, part of the MOCA GA Permanent Collection, a gift of Edwin Robinson in Memory of Pauline Katherine Dibella.

Join Us

For the opening reception on September 5th. Reserve your spot now!


75 Bennett Streeet
Atlanta, GA 30309 United States
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