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THIBODAUX, La. — A Nicholls State University art professor will return this fall to China in spirit. This is because an international photography festival will feature her series using glue traps as subject matter.
Susan Dooley, a curator based in Long Island, New York, has selected five of professor Deborah Lillie’s works for an exhibition in China. The images will be a part of the Pingyao International Photography Festival.
“In 1992, I was fortunate enough to spend a month in China making photographs, so I feel a special connection to the country,” Lillie said. “I won’t be able to make the trip to see this work installed in Pingyao. But I am thrilled to have this opportunity and know that my artwork will be seen there.”
The photographs are from Lillie’s series, “Collateral Damage,” the subject of which was a collection of glue traps. A friend of Lillie’s had placed the traps in an attic 15 years ago. Recently, she found the remains of insects, lizards and mice that had met their end by straying onto the traps. Lillie photographed the traps in her studio, using macro photography and photo-stitching techniques. Once done, she created high detail, large-scale prints. Each print in the series measures approximately 3 feet by 5 feet.
“At this scale, the viewer may find they experience the scenes pictured with a slightly more sympathetic eye,” Lillie said. “In addition, some of the images take on the feeling of a partially excavated archaeological site.”
The Pingyao International Photography Festival is an annual event in Pingyao, China. Pingyao is a 2,700-year-old ancient walled city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The festival, now in its 19th year, will be Sept. 19 to Sept. 25th. Advocating diversity, internationalism and professionalism, the festival attracts about 100,000 visitors. It is an important stage for photographers from around the world.