of one and the other
March 8 - May 11
Community lecture and book signing: March 8, 2018 5:30 - 7:30pm
Exerpt from the Artist Statement
Of One and The Other explores the complexity found in the diverse relationships between animals and humans from points along a spectrum spanning the fine line between adoration, lifesaving, and exploitation.
By immersing myself in the commonalities and conflicts of interest between neighboring groups, I sought to call attention to the slippery divide; the borderlands we collectively share with our animal counterparts and make pictures about whether or not these figurative boundaries are either honored or crossed. They speak to the intrinsic dilemma surrounding our ideals and reverence for wild nature as well as our inevitable interference.
Made over a period of five years, the photographs that are part of this collection look at how we desire to coexist harmoniously with animals, yet we seek control, consumption, and domination. These disparities have yet to be reconciled, however there is a growing sensibility and consciousness in Western culture towards animals as sentient―but not equal―beings.
Of One and The Other is an acknowledgment of the contradictions, the unresolved and the intricate edges shared by the contemporary lives of humans and the undomesticated world of non-human beings. As seen together, the images are a call to revere the natural world while living in a modern one in which the two realms are in open conflict. Irrespective of our own biases, within every interaction and encounter, there deserves to be a deeper understanding of our obligations and our impact on the lives of animals; who by definition share our ability to perceive and respond to complex sensations and emotions: sight, touch, smell, but also joy, fear, and suffering.
About the Artist
Jayanti Seiler advocates for the ethical treatment of animals as an artist, using photography as a vehicle to incubate discussion, broaden awareness, and ultimately bring about change. She has generated wide-ranging and provocative photographic art for over twenty years. As an Associate Professor at the Southeast Center for Photographic Studies in Daytona Beach Florida, she has taught technical and creative art courses in photography since 2011. She founded the organization JayantiPictures, LLC. in 2017, to promote, fund and produce artist works that increase understanding for the fair treatment of animals. In 2018, she released a first edition fine art book of her series titled, Of One and The Other, capturing the complexity of human-animal relationships.
Jayanti’s photography has gained national and international recognition in publications including The New York Times LENS, LIFE FORCE Magazine in the UK, LENSCRATCH, Véganes, magazine contreculturel in Canada, GEO Wissen Magazine in Germany, Vision Magazine in Beijing, Edge of Humanity Magazine, Muybridge’s Horse Magazine, and Bird In Flight Magazine in Russia. Her photography has been exhibited in the USA and internationally including the Southeast Museum of Photography, Chiang Mai University Art Museum in Thailand, Workspace Gallery in Nebraska, Harvard University, Museum of Contemporary Art Georgia, The von Liebig Art Center in Naples Florida, and Washington State University. Her contributions to animal activism extend beyond her photographic work to include supportive collaborations with animal rights groups. In 2014, she was commissioned by Big Cat Rescue, one of the largest accredited sanctuaries in the country dedicated to abused and abandoned big cats, to create a film featured on the Discovery Animalist Channel.
Jayanti ran a commercial photography business for eight years while teaching art full-time in the Sarasota County school system. In 2011, she was a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Alachua County Florida, a court appointed advocate that represents children’s rights in the foster care system. During this time she created the film, Docket, featuring monologues of former foster children and GAL volunteers. The film was exhibited at the University Gallery at the University of Florida, screened at the Pride Community Center of North Central Florida and the Alachua County Partnership for Strong Families. She received her Master of Fine Arts Degree from the University of Florida and her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Photography from the Rhode Island School of Design. In 2000, Jayanti was hired by Luna Imaging, Inc. as a photographer at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City to capture the Design Collection for the DDC digital database project.