Imagine walking into a room and being able to see your entire life up to that point on display solely through pictures? This is exactly what the FORM Gallery, “Recognition System” by junior Joseph Kolb does.
The walls of the small gallery room are completely covered in photographs, each one the exact same size and displaying the same person, Kolb.
Kolb created this gallery in order to “demonstrate how much one can change without realizing and to consider how the perception of self is constructed.”
Each image found on the walls of the gallery represent various stages of Kolb’s life including baby pictures and some taken here during his time at Hofstra.
“At first I thought it was multiple people but then I realized it was one person and that’s what really stood out to me, that there were so many pictures taken throughout his lifetime,” sophomore biology major Monique Escalante said.
One of the initial draws to the gallery are the windows covered in brown paper. The FORM Gallery is known as being an open space; so walking up and seeing the windows covered is a startling contrast. Despite the closed off windows, the door to the gallery is open and there is a disco ball spinning from the ceiling illuminating the many faces of Joseph Kolb.
Once inside the gallery, the number of photographs overwhelms the viewer. There is no chronological order to the photos and no clear starting point, which at first made it difficult to enjoy the gallery. But as I looked around, the lack of organization added to the contrast between the various points in his life.
A baby photo next to one taken in high school or a middle school photo next to one taken in college helps the viewer see the drastic change that has gradually taken place over time.
Another surprising piece of this gallery was the quality of the photographs. One might assume that the quality would be the same for each photograph, but in this gallery, it is clear that every photo was not taken the same way. Some look slightly pixilated as though taken with a camera phone, while others were obviously taken with a professional camera.
This stark contrast between the different qualities of each photo also helps to show the gradual change found amongst the various photos.
“Recognition System” is a gallery dedicated to change and causes the viewer to stop and think about the changes that have taken place in their life as well.