Portrait © Kahn & Selesnick (2016)
NOAH S. THOMPSON
Dickinson College '17
English Literature and Art & Art History
Open your mind, be brave, and be kind.
Because of my studies in English Literature and Art & Art History I have been encouraged to explore all mediums and find a connection between visual and verbal messages, but it was not until one of my English professors recommended that I explore my photography further that it became a primary focus of my studies as well as my life. Photography allows us to capture moments in time when the light was in just the right place, and I believe the goal of any artist is to use their respective mediums to convey a sense of the emotion that moved them in that moment. A successful portrait can tell an entire story with one look, and the written word can help to elaborate and either confirm or change the thought of the viewer.
While photography has been a large part of my studies there is also a question of performance and queerness that cannot be separated from my work. As someone who identifies as queer there is a constant struggle with ideas about the creation of art. Do I have to be queer to make queer art, or does it rely solely on the subject of a piece? Does my art have to contain any explicitly queer themes at all, or does my being queer automatically make all of my work fall into that category? There is a whole history of LGBTQ artists that is often overlooked, save for the beginnings of the 20th century with American artists like Charles Demuth, Marsden Hartley, and Andy Warhol. However, unlike schools of art there can be no cohesive and completely unifying factor of queer art, for no two stories are exactly the same. Thus I explore a "queer zeitgeist" of sorts, tracing a lineage of a community existing outside of one time and place.
Lastly, as another driving force of my art, there is so much to be seen in this world, but we search for something so fantastic that we ignore the mundane and beautiful treasurers the Earth has given us. Wherever the future takes me I want to bring to light the moments no one notices, and show the beauty in the everything. In a world that constantly advances forward we need to make sure that no part of our time is forgotten.