Valerie Olafson explores beauty in Kortman Gallery show

"Lips" (above) and "Hands" (right) are among the works on display at Valerie Olafson's "50 Parts, MMX" at Kortman Gallery. The show opens April 16 during Spring ArtScene. Photo provided

From press release

Rockford artist Valerie Olafson revisits the theme of beauty and aging in a photography exhibition opening Friday, April 16, in the Kortman Gallery.

The exhibition of striking black-and-white images, titled “50 Parts, MMX,” is a photographic essay that expands on the ideas of “mMMm Beauty,” a previous Kortman Gallery show that was presented in 2000 when Olafson was 40.

“In that exhibit, I sought to produce my vision of beauty for the new millennium…life, experience and knowledge,” said Olafson. “My friends stepped in front of the camera to help visually make my point.”

At 50, Olafson expected to revisit and expand the ideas in “mMMm Beauty.’’

“What evolved was an introspective look at me and the beauty I find in myself,” she writes. “I have included some images of friends again; the definition would have been too narrow otherwise. Aging is not always perfect, but is always beautiful.”

Olafson, who has been an artist/photographer for almost two decades, is an adjunct instructor of art at Rock Valley College.

The Spring ArtScene openings for the “50 Parts, MMX” exhibit are Friday, April 16, from 5 to 9 p.m., and Saturday, April 17, from 3 to 9 p.m., in the Kortman Gallery, upstairs at J.R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 N. Main St., downtown Rockford. The exhibit runs through May 31, and admission is free and open to the public. For more information, call (815) 968-0123 or visit www.

From the April 14-20, 2010 issue

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