With Arts & Entertainment Editor Kathy L. Collins

The December exhibit at the Bruton Memorial Library in downtown Plant City features the fantastic and mystical black and white photographs of James Graves, a resident of Plant City.

According to Amanda LaPorta, Adult Services Librarian for the Bruton Memorial Library, “Graves is displaying 11 framed photographs. They possess melancholy quality and convey themes of isolation, from one photo of an abandoned chair to another of a figure in the woods.” LaPorta added, “Each photograph is thoughtfully compared such that each tells an individual story, while also being part of a collective, eerie narrative.”

The exhibit is indeed one of the most interesting I have viewed in a long time. The exhibit is worth a visit to historic, downtown Plant City just to see it.

Graves’ stated, “My project, Marking Questions, documents the world around me as I attempt to make images which speak, much like poetry, on both the conscious and subconscious levels. I have a slowed down approach to making photographs, using film and medium format cameras that leads to more deliberate, contemplative, yet intuitive narratives.”

Graves was born in Pennsylvania and moved to Florida when he was in his early teens. He attended the University of South Florida where he earned a B.A. in English Literature and an M.A. in Library and Information Studies. He first took up photography after he graduated from USF. He has always used black and white film in creating his art photographs. After a career as a librarian in the county public library system, he returned to photography.

Graves’ work has been exhibited on a solo basis at the Bruton Memorial library in 2013 and the Jimmie B. Keel a Regional Library in Tampa in 2014. He has been in group exhibits at the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts and in photography centers in Vermont, Colorado and South Carolina.

For information on Graces’ work, visit www.jgravesphoto.com. The Bruton Memorial Library is located at 302 W. McLendon St. in Plant City. Call 757-9215 or visit the front desk.