Exhibition Text

In his series, Seeing in the Dark, Tommy Keith explores the limits of human vision and underscores photography’s innate ability to reveal the unseen. Working in near-darkness during the liminal moments of twilight, Keith makes photographs that shift otherwise ordinary scenes into enigmatic images that challenge our perception of the world around us.

Rendered against dark skies in the stark light of Keith’s portable flash units, familiar sights of nature are transformed into something new or even revelatory—falling snow and swarming bugs are revealed as vast fields of light resembling Deep Field astronomical images; drooping flower stalks and ice-laden branches become anthropomorphic forms of shadow and color. Though rich in visual information, the images remain difficult to decipher—they flicker between the ordinary and the unknowable, and it is in this state of limbo that Keith’s images come to life.

-Kai Caemmerer, Curator

︎︎︎  Installation views at SFO Museum, 2022