You may have noticed that it has been very quiet here at A View to Hugh the past couple months. Well, that’s because there has been way too much happening behind the scenes! I’ve been deeply immersed in curating the exhibit Photographs by Hugh Morton: An Uncommon Retrospective, and today is its official debut at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. For those readers who hail from other states, the exhibit is ten miles or so as the raven flies from Grandfather Mountain. (By car you’ll need to drive about twice as far.)
The exhibit consists of eighty-six photographs, many of which have never been published or were published decades ago, made from high-resolution scans of Morton’s original negatives and printed on a fine art inkjet paper. Even if you have seen Morton’s photographs in books, magazines, and online, you probably have never seen his photographs like this before. Here’s a teaser: the exhibit includes a seven-foot-long seamless panorama printed from six negatives made from an outcrop on the west side of Mount Jefferson in 1954!
The Morton exhibit opening is part of the Turchin Center’s larger Fall Celebration, which includes four other exhibits. Their celebration is, in turn, part of an even larger event, downtown Boone’s “First Friday Art Crawl.” Attendance at the Turchin this evening could surpass 1,000 people during the four-hour open house.
We at UNC-Chapel Hill will be hosting a special event at the Turchin Center on Saturday, October 5th—a conversation about Hugh Morton and his photography with his friends Woody Durham (“The Voice of the Tar Heels”), Betty McCain, and regular contributor to A View to Hugh Jack Hilliard. I’ll be offering a gallery talk after the panel discussion, and there will be light afternoon refreshments. More details will be announced in the near future.
This retrospective has been two years in the making, and it has been an exhausting but extremely rewarding experience. The exhibit will be on display through January 25th, and during the coming months I’ll be featuring images in the exhibit with more thorough background and description than an exhibit label will permit. I’ll also talk about the research and design processes, and more. So please check back often!
But for now, I’m headed to Boone to take it all in!