BUCKHANNON – Residents and visitors in north-central West Virginia only have two more weekends to visit “France in Super Blue,” a unique solo photography exhibit created by a Mountain State native.
Artist/photographer Gary Schubert’s ‘Carpe Lucem: France in Super Blue’ will be on display each Friday and Saturday evening from 4 to 8 p.m. through May 14, 2022. The exhibit opened Friday with a reception that attracted art enthusiasts to the Colonial Arts Center’s M.I.B. Gallery to get a glimpse of Schubert’s work as it made its debut.
At the opening reception, Schubert introduced his work and gave some insight into his featured work. During a 2019 visit to France, he had wanted to ‘photograph and see France in a different way than usual,’ so he used a digital camera converted for Super Blue image capture. He said the sensor in the camera has a specially installed filter that allows only blue, infrared and ultraviolet light to pass. The images he captured with the Super Blue are featured side-by-side with monochrome images to allow the viewer to examine and appreciate the unique signature of infrared blended with blue and ultraviolet.
Bryson VanNostrand, ART26201 founding member, introduced Schubert and the exhibit which he described as ‘conceptual.’ VanNostrand was the curator of this particular display and selected the pieces used in the show.
“What is interesting to me is how the ultraviolet and the infrared are kind of jumping out of these blues,” VanNostrand said. “There is a real contrast between what is alive in the image. We alternated between buildings and the natural environment around the room. It seems the lifeforce is what the Super Blue has captured. We do photography exhibits in this space, but this is not your run-of-the-mill photography.”
In 2019, Schubert said his art history and photography classes took a trip to France, and he wanted to create something different than what he described as ‘touristry pictures of France.’
“I took basically what was an amateur camera and had it converted to Super Blue,” Schubert said. “This records infrared, ultraviolet and blue light, which we can see. You get completely different results and I thought, this is what I will do in France – I will take all of my images with this camera and that is what I did.”
Schubert said when he came home, he had to put a portion of the photos together for a presentation to the rest of the students and faculty.
“When I looked at the image on my camera, it pretty much showed me what you see as the color images,” he said. “I liked that, and I really dialed in on the transition between the monochrome and the color images.”
Schubert said he chose the title of his display Carpe Lucem because it means ‘seize the light.’
“A lot of my work is conceptual and is about the light but this is very special light – infrared, ultraviolet and blue,” Schubert said. “That is the back story of this exhibit.”
Schubert describes himself as an artist, painter, printmaker, photographer, digital artist and art collector. A West Virginia native, he earned a Master of Fine Arts in painting and a Master of Science degree in computer science from West Virginia University. Schubert studied painting under Tom Nakashima and photography under Lucien Clergue, and his artwork has been displayed in many private and public collections, including the Huntington Museum of Art and The Whitney Museum of American Art.
Schubert retired from Alderson Broaddus University where he was a professor of art and computer science.