Shadowlands - Brenda Scott


About the Exhibit

This exhibit asks the question, "What is reality?" I used a movie projection screen, an overhead projector, and real and imaginary objects to create these images.

Exhibit Dates and Venues

This exhibit was at Lilly Library on East Campus at Duke University in 2011.   In 2013, music images from the exhibit were then displayed at The Archangel Centre, then the home of the Music Ministry, at St. Michael the Archangel in Cary, NC.

Artist Statement

Plato's Allegory of the Cave and Theory of Forms present ideas about reality, the material world of change, and higher truths. He asserts that what we experience in life without education or enlightenment is like the experience of a prisoner chained in a cave watching shadows of reality on the wall. The higher truth or reality is not what we experience in the changes of everyday sensation – this mundane world is transient and is a shadow of higher truth.

In a sense, photography is a shadow of reality. It captures a moment of something ever-changing. But is this moment perhaps the embodiment of this reflection – a way of capturing and preserving the shadows of reality, and thus providing a greater exemplar of a higher truth than our experiences alone? Can photographs provide a means of searching for and seeking a higher truth? As the character Joy stated in the stage version of Shadowlands,

“See yourself in the mirror, you're separate from yourself. See the world in the mirror, you're separate from the world. I don't want that separation anymore.”

I am seeking a re-connection with reality through these images. In keeping with Plato's Allegory, I have created a shadow world, but I have added real elements interacting with the shadows, exploring ideas of religion, spirituality, music, human relationships, and even sports.


Many thanks to Kelley Lawton for allowing me to show my images and for believing in me. Thank you also to Greta Boers.  Thank you to Wayne Cusher, Director of Music at St. Michael the Archangel for exhibiting my works at The Archangel Centre.