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Images Unbound
On view through September 25, 2022
Des Moines Art Center
Des Moines, Iowa

The world is overrun with images. From news, film and television, and social media to the countless photos stored on our phones, we are constantly surrounded by pictures. With the invention of photography in the 19th century, people began living in a world of images. Continued advances in camera technology and the invention of film have radically changed our relationship to art, visual culture, and the world around us. Throughout the 20th and 21st centuries, artists have explored the consequences and opportunities that arise when visual culture becomes untethered from its original context, helping us navigate a world where images are always on the move.

Some artists have even turned inward to consider how advances in technology have reshaped the art world, questioning how our ability to reproduce images has changed the experience of art. In a world inundated with images unbound from a fixed context, they help us make sense of this nonsensical experience by focusing our attention and placing fragments into new and exciting narratives.

[Image: Frank Big Bear (American, Anishinabe, born 1953). Multiverse: Spin Off VI, 2013. Collage on found paper Des Moines Art Center Permanent Collections; Gift of Jim and Ellen Hubbell, 2020.10.a-.l]