The result of James Karales’s first formal photojournalistic foray, this work captures with clarity and candor a single moment within the small mining town of Rendville in the Appalachian region of Ohio. While Karales does not name the figure in the foreground, this man is no stranger. He stares straight into the camera’s lens with conviction, holding a book in front of him, almost handing it through the photograph’s frame to us. Although Karales sets this figure sharply in focus, he also sets him slightly to the left in the foreground so that we are able to spot a second figure, a female. She sits, arms and legs crossed, on the rather rundown porch outside of a house and outside of the photograph’s depth of field. While blurry, this background provides us with a personalized context. We are invited into the private and intimate life of this couple, if only for a moment.
–Caitlin Cook ‘12 Gund Gallery Associate