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Review by Jerry L. Eisley


 
       September 1987
 
       Currently showing at the Potter's House Gallery is a one-person exhibition of black and white photography by artist Miriam A. Kilmer.
 
       In a world of harsh realities and tough art, Kilmer's images are exciting, fresh and sensitive. "Harmony", the title of the show, brings together the artist's concerns for the reverence of life as it expresses itself in orderly arrangements of objects, moments of communion with nature as well as harmony of human relationships and inner spiritual integrity.
 
       A highly personal exhibition, Kilmer has filled the gallery space with joy-filled photos full of the wonders of common life. Those moments fleeting and of great fragility are recorded by the camera through the artist's superb eye. The show in actuality is a personal invitation into the eye of a soul. Many of the photos are uncropped, have a direct and visceral message without a sense of manipulation. It is hoped that as the years progress, Miss Kilmer will become even more adept in her use of the camera in this spontaneous style.
 
       Very daring in her approach, Kilmer takes the common and often considered mundane image and transforms it into a form of sign to remind us of that which should be preserved in this life. A special note is "Newly Adopted", in which the artist depicts a young father asleep on the pillow with his young child reaching over toward him. The composition is exquisite, the image potent, the contrast of dark and light are especially moving. Her photos of persons work best, arranged objects and some of the landscapes seem too literal. Also, it is regrettable that the Potter's House did not provide better lighting. Especially distracting are the large titles under each work. In many cases, the large labels reduce the power of the images.
 
       The beauty and power of the artist's selection of images and her ability for us to touch her soul overcome any limitations that might be evident.
 
       Miss Kilmer has exhibited extensively in the Washington area and throughout the United States. She is director of Amor Dei Communications, a private enterprise specializing in spirituality and fine arts. She is currently pursuing a M.A in spirituality at De Sales Hall School of Theology in Washington, D.C. Her artistic pursuits include works in pastel as well as photography. She is a member of the Washington Women's Arts Center, Catholic Artists of the 80's and the Art League of Virginia.
 
       Miss Kilmer has had her work included in 33 juried group exhibitions as well as four one-person shows in the past seven years. The Potter's House Coffee House hours are M-F, 11 a.m - 3 p.m. and Th-F 8 - 11 p.m. and is located at 1658 Columbia Road in Washington.
 
 
           Jerry L. Eisley is a free-lance reviewer, and Curator of Foxhall Gallery
 
       A photograph from "Harmony" may be seen a here: Rachel Reading to Tinao
Please email Miriam if you would like her to research and scan more of these early B&W photographs this my web site; they would be available as Archival Giclée Platinum prints.

 
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Original site design, art and graphics   © 1993 ~ 2017 Miriam A. Kilmer
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