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Witness: Leo Dodd & Paul Dodd

October 6, 2017 - November 12, 2017

RoCo presents Witness featuring works by Paul Dodd and the late Leo Dodd (1927 – 2015). The exhibition contrasts their shared impulse and decades-long commitment to documenting different aspects of Rochester, NY.

In the mid-nineties Paul started painting portraits of local people. One of his major sources has been, and still is, the Democrat and Chronicle Crime Stoppers page. He has continued to work from these images, making hundreds of drawings and paintings over the years. Paul creates his own drawings, paintings, and photographs in a straightforward reinterpretation of the source imagery, meditating on the mugshot. Witness includes paintings, drawings, photographs, twenty new charcoal drawings, and source materials and documents related to the project.

Witness also includes a collection of thirty paintings by Paul's father Leo that explore and document the landscapes and changes in the city of Rochester. After retirement, Leo traveled around Rochester sketching local sights. He loved downtown and was especially drawn to construction sites as Rochester remade itself, and was attracted to the scale of the people to the job.

The exhibition is accompanied by an introduction by Bleu Cease, the essay A Refection on Mug Shots by Erica Bryant examining how we image crime and criminality in our culture, and an essay by local artist and gallerist Rick Muto considering the work of Leo Dodd.

About the Artists

Leo Dodd (Rochester, NY) was a mechanical design engineer for the Eastman Kodak Company for 30 years. In addition to painting, his many hobbies and interests included birding, local history, preservation, and photography. When Dodd retired as an engineer from Eastman Kodak Co. in 1986, he pursued painting and drawing. He attended art classes and workshops at the Rochester Institute of Technology and the Memorial Art Gallery, among others, where he became an avid artist, and traveled around Rochester recording many local scenes and events.

Paul Dodd (Rochester, NY) graduated from SUNY college in 1978 with a BS in Fine Arts. He is a painter, musician, and photographer. Between 1997and 2015 he has held solo exhibitions at the Cell Gallery at Writers & Books, the Kinetic Gallery at SUNY Geneseo, the Little Theatre Cafe, and the Rochester Contemporary Art Center. He has participated in several group shows the New York State area including venues such as the Memorial Art Gallery, I-Square Gallery, Schweinfurth, and several MAG Creative Workshop shows. Paul also plays drums with the improvisational jazz group Margaret Explosion.

About The Rochester Biennial

The New Rochester Biennial is dedicated to expanding the dialogue surrounding contemporary art and supporting cooperation between Rochester’s mid-sized venues. For the 2017 edition of the RBNL, RoCo, VSW, and Gallery r have each curated exhibitions that investigate collaboration and influence, and feature projects by a diverse range of artists. In future editions, the Biennial will continue to bring artists and arts organizations together prompting new curatorial models.