Preview: Hank Ketelsen’s “Water Study”

In his thesis show, Water Study, Hank Ketelsen will exhibit photographs of the shoreline where the Savannah River and the city of Savannah meet. Since the founding of the city, the river has been used to sustain the local community, but, due to progress and development, the Savannah River is no longer a natural waterway. It is now a freeway for commercial and industrial activity.

Ketelsen integrates water samples from the Savannah River into his photographic process. Ketelsen told SAI: “I place water from the places that I photograph into the chemicals that develop pictures and then splash that onto the photographic paper to reveal parts of the image.” The images in Water Study reveal the impact that industrial activity has had on the river. These abstract representations reveal a value system that prioritizes economy over ecology.

Water Study opens on Friday, April 22 at Oglethorpe Gallery. Ketelsen is originally from South Lake Tahoe, California and currently lives in Savannah, Georgia where he is pursuing his MFA in Photography from the Savannah College of Art and Design. 

You can see more of Ketelsen’s work on his website:

Author: Michelle Guash

Michelle Guash is an Art Historian who currently works for the Telfair Museum of Art. She is originally from Ponce, Puerto Rico and has a dog named Tiny. She hopes to be a curator, collector and gallery owner one day.

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