Photographer displays images taken from windows of vehicles

5:12:12 PM CDT - Thursday, September 23, 2004

By Chase Willhite

Former Wichita State faculty member Robert E. Lewis is returning to campus to present his photography exhibition "From My Moving Window" at the Clayton Staples Gallery, as a sort of farewell to this part of the country.

Lewis, currently a professor of photography at the University of Memphis, will speak at 4 p.m. today (Friday, Sept. 24) in McKnight Art Center. An artist's reception will follow in the gallery.

The exhibit, which opened Sept. 13, focuses on Lewis' journeys through parts of the United States and Mexico, as well as travels to England and Wales. All of the photographs were taken from the windows of different types of transportation.

"For years I have been photographing landscapes that are oriented to street, road and rail," Lewis said. "It seemed only natural to make photographs from vehicles, whether they be car, bus or train."

" We're very fortunate to have Bob coming with his exhibit to WSU," said Ron Christ, professor of painting and drawing in the School of Art and Design. "He has a very inventive mind when it comes to developing photography as a truly thematic tool."

Lewis served as assistant professor of photography at WSU from 1990-92 and as the acting chair of the School of Art and Design for the 1991-92 school year.

"Many of us had kept professional contact with Bob over the years," Christ said. "He is retiring from teaching at the end of the year, so this is, in a way, his farewell to this part of the country."

Over the course of his professional career, Lewis' photography has been featured in more than 60 exhibitions in galleries and museums throughout the United States and Italy. His work has also been featured in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Cinema Magazine in Germany.

"This exhibit is really a great demonstration of subject matter becoming a unifying theme," Christ said. "Bob has had many impressive exhibits, and this is one that really focuses on diversity and variety, but also unification."

The exhibition runs through Oct. 8 and is free and open to the public. Staples Gallery hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. The gallery is located in McKnight Art Center.

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