Urban Offerings

Urban Offerings is an exhibit of photographs, by Image City founding partner Betsy Phillips, which centers on the rich visual delights offered in urban environments. Images range from the totally abstract, often found on walls, windows, and manmade objects such as dumpsters and cars, to the strong shadows created by the play of light on urban architecture, as well as people just being themselves, sometimes thought provoking, sometimes providing a bit of humor – or both. The exhibit offers images of New York City, Rochester, Syracuse, New Orleans, Portland, OR, and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

The series includes images that span ten years.  As Betsy wandered through the lively streets and viewed abstracts all around her, the cities themselves energized her. Her biggest challenge when designing her exhibit was the amount of time necessary to go through all her files and choose images that made sense together.  


Betsy’s series includes a total of 25 images.  In the foyer of the gallery visitors can see a colorful abstract. When viewers enter the gallery, they will see a unique image called Cops-This American Life- hanging in the back alcove.  The work consists of a series of vertical strips of images of police officers armed with assault weapons, set against a backdrop of provocative models with brightly colored lips. The juxtaposition of the two creates a strong contrast for the viewer. Movement is created by suspending the strips from fishing line. The main wall features large color abstract images, while the back wall contains black and white images surrounding a 29 x 39 image of MOMA, black and white, with a pop of red. The East Wall completes the show with a mix of red, white, and black urban images.

Cops-This American Life

After seeing this series, Betsy hopes that the viewers see the visual pleasures that exist in the ordinary.  


2 responses to “Urban Offerings”

  1. In an earlier post you discussed choosing individual photos to present at Image City. Betsy mentions that “Her biggest challenge when designing her exhibit was the amount of time necessary to go through all her files and choose images that made sense together.” What advice do you have about putting a show together for eight photos on a Panel or for a wall show as Betsy has?

    • Your question is timed perfectly! I am in the process of writing an article that focuses on that topic. The title is “Guidelines for Selecting Photographs for an Exhibit.”

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