Photographer Jock McDonald
Artist Talk Webinar: with Jock McDonald. Learn about The Rurals and other projects. Join us for a discussion and Q & A.
Saturday, Feb 19, 2022, 11 am – 12:30 pm
Opening Reception: Saturday, Jan 8, 2022, 1–4 pm *Must show proof of Covid 19 vaccination to attend.
Exhibit Dates: Jan 8 – March 3, 2022
Location: Harvey Milk Photo Center, 50 Scott St., SF
Curator: Melissa Keesor, Director of Harvey Milk Photo Center
Kindred Faces of Country Life
By Jock McDonald
Follow on social @thejockmcdonald
The RURALS Project became and continues to be, a project of discovery. It has revealed to me qualities of rural community life that are threatened by technology, not only in these foreign countries, but in the United States as well. The villages I visited in China, Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Mexico and Cuba were largely agricultural. The farming in these rural areas is still relatively primitive. This technological “backwaterness” seemed to me to have some positive, as well as negative, results. I feel that the people I met in these villages, despite their tremendous hardships, lead richer lives than many of the highly civilized peoples I met in the large cities of those countries, due to the depth of their sense of connection to others.
This project is a modern journey back in time to a connectedness of soul to soil, of the individual to family. Maybe I am only lamenting the loss of the good old days and the human values of those times. I recognize the vast distance we have covered in a short time the ironic creation of the “global village”, and the dehumanization that comes with technological advances. This is the price tag for the velocity at which we choosing to travel in our modern world.
To sit at a table with three generations of people, after farming all day long with them, singing ancient songs that are handed down through the generations; was a journey into our past, and a way of being profoundly moving experience.
It is with reverence and awe that I have been drawn into the lives of these rural people. I recognize a connection between them and all of our own rural ancestors. I believe that the photographs I took capture dimensions of community life that are disappearing, and not entirely for healthy human reasons. I am not a historian or sociologist, but I believe that when people lose agriculture as their dominant way of living, their societies decay. It is not the loss of farming itself that is responsible for this decay. It is rather, the loss of those qualities of life that require a community’s acknowledged interdependence and communal awareness, and the substitution of either too much individual self-seeking, or subordination of the human community to abstract corporate enterprise. I plan to continue to record these kindred faces of country life throughout the world, to help preserve images of the rurals and the humanity they evoke.
A noted lecturer, McDonald has spoken at the Academy of Art San Francisco, Oxbow School, Portfolio Center, California State University, Cal Poly, City College of San Francisco, and the Saybrook Institute.
Jock McDonald, born in Vancouver, Canada in 1961, opened his Art studio in San Francisco in 1986. He is a self-taught photographer whose work –both in black-and-white and color– has achieved national and international critical acclaim for its distinctive use of humanity, our shared commonalities, and qualities of mystery. McDonald’s portraiture, his depictions of world rural life, and Woven works have been widely published and exhibited in galleries and museums around the world, including exhibitions in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Russia, Ukraine, and Cuba co-sponsored by the Mexican, Canadian, U.S., Cuban, and former Eastern European Soviet governments. His last exhibit, titled, The Light of water was exhibited at the San Francisco International Airport.
MAJOR FINE ART EXHIBITIONS
2020 We the People, Projection Project with Glide Memorial Church, San Francisco, CA
2019 The Light of Water, San Francisco International Airport, San Francisco CA.
2017 The Art of Jock McDonald, Found by Maja, San Francisco CA.
2016 Native Son Vancouver B.C. Canada
2015 Napa Valley Collects, Napa Valley Museum USA
2013 Liquidity, Havana the Long View, Gallery 16 San Francisco CA. USA
2012 Liquidity, The Journey of Water, Galeria Galiano, Centro Habana, Cuba
2010 One World Portrait,Lehigh University Art Gallery Museum LUAG Gallery, Bethleham, PA
2009 Water: Liquid: Instability 291 Gallery, San Francisco USA
2009 One World Portrait, Havana Biennial, Havana Cuba
2009 One World Portrait, Y2Y Gallery, San Francisco USA
2009 The Perspective Show: Straight Lines in a Round World, Ogilvy New York USA
2008 The Perspective Show: Straight Lines in a Round World ,291 Gallery San Francisco, California
2007 Being and Seeming, 30 years of Self Portraits, Casa Escorza, Guadalajara, Mexico
2007 “A Series of Series”di Rosa Preserve, Gatehouse Gallery, Napa California
2006 “A Series of Series” Ex Convento del Carmen, Guadalajara, Mexico
2006 One World Portrait, Included in the Biennial, Havana, Cuba
2004 Untitled (Portrait of Gunter Gerzo), Permanent collection of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, (Santa Barbara)
2004 Terra Firma, The Roots of Community, Portraits of rural life. Museum Fototeca de Cuba,
2004 di Rosa Preserve: Art & Nature, Third Annual Benefit Exhibition and Auction (Napa, California) October
di Rosa Preserve Artists – Contemporary Perspectives Art Auction Museum of Contemporary Art, Luther Burbank Center for the Arts (Santa Rosa, CA) May
2003 The Rurals: Soul to Soul. Texas Tech University (Lubbock, TX). August – October
The Rurals: Soul to Soul. Center for Contemporary Arts (Abilene, TX). March
1999 The Possibility of the Impossible: Rural Portraits of Cuba and the United States of America. ITESO, Centro Cultural (Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico).
1998 The Color of Black & White. Digital Pond Gallery (San Francisco).
1996 The Rurals. Robert Mondavi Winery (Oakville, CA). January – March
1996 One Vision: Two Perspectives. Gallery 16 (San Francisco). January – February
1995 Journey into the Interior: Photographs of Rural Life. Vision Gallery (San Francisco).
1994 Una Visión, Dos Perspectivas: La Fotografía de Jock McDonald (“One Vision, Two Perspectives: The Photography of Jock McDonald”); A Retrospective Exhibition 1984-1994.
Exconvento del Carmen (Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico). Co-produced by the Governor and Minister of Culture of the State of Jalisco, the US Consul General, the Embassy of Canada, and SAR, Ltd.
1994 Here and Now: Bay Area Masterworks from the di Rosa Collection, a featured artist.
Oakland Museum (Oakland, CA).
Portraits by Jock McDonald. Academy of Art College (San Francisco).
1993 The Rurals: Kindred Faces of Country Life in Russia, Ukraine and Southern Illinois.
Belcher Street Studios (San Francisco).
1991 Positive Negatives: Portraits of Courageous Russian and American Public Figures.
Fortress of Peter and Paul (Leningrad, USSR).
Positive Negatives: Portraits of Courageous Russian and American Public Figures.
Ukrainian Republic Social & Cultural Center (Kiev, Ukraine, USSR)
1989 Photographs by Jock McDonald. The Atrium Gallery, Joseph Lurie Company (San Francisco).
Positive Negatives. St. John’s College (Santa Fe, NM).
Visions in View, a nationwide Eastman Kodak tour. McDonald’s portraits were the only black-and-white photographs included.
1987 Comic Celebrity Portraits. San Francisco Suicide Prevention Benefit, San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center; De Young Museum (San Francisco).
1986 Photo-linen Portraits of California Artists. Fuller-Goldeen Gallery (San Francisco).
LECTURES AND AUTHORED ARTICLES
2016 The Idea Lounge, Art in Our Own Image, Petaluma, California
2009 The Beauty and Intention of Film, San Francisco California
2008 The Art of Seeing, Sonoma California
2007 Casa Escorza ”The Cultural Power of photography” Guadalajara, Mexico
2007 di Rosa Preserve “Interpreting perspective on Culture” with Bernardo Huzo Gonzales and
2005 “How To Get There from Here”, City College of San Francisco, Concert and Lecture Series
2004 The Art of Farming,Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
2004 Guest Artist, Master Class.California State University Summer Arts (Fresno)
2004 Teacher, Illustrative Portraiture,Fall 2003 Academy of Art (San Francisco)
2002 I’ve been there and there’s no there there. Oxbow School (Napa, CA)
Capitalism Versus Communism and the Spiritual Ramifications on the Artistic Temperament.
Di Rosa Preserve (Napa, CA).
1997 A Model Approach to Shooting ‘Real People’ and getting Great Results. PHOTO ‘97 Conference at VISCOMM ‘97(Los Angeles); American Institute of Graphic Arts, Phoenix Chapter (Phoenix, AZ).
1994 A Model Approach to Shooting ‘Real People’ and Getting Great Results. PHOTO Conference ‘94 at VISCOMM ‘94, Javits Center (New York City); PHOTO West ‘94 Conference at VISCOMM ‘94, Moscone Center (San Francisco).
1993 Journeys Into the Interior: Photographs of Rural Russians, Ukrainians and Americans. Saybrook Institute Graduate School & Research Center (San Francisco).
1993 A Model Approach to Shooting ‘Real People’ and Getting Great Results. PHOTO ‘94 Conference at VISCOMM ‘94, Javits Center (New York City); PHOTO West ‘94 Conference at VISCOMM West ‘94, Moscone Center (San Francisco).
1992 Russians, with Love. An article in San Francisco Chronicle’s“This World.”
Lover of the Image. American Photographers Association seminars and courses: City College (San Francisco); the Academy of Art (San Francisco); and the Art Center College of Design (Switzerland)
The di Rosa Art and Preserve, Napa, CA.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas
University of California, San Louis Obispo, CA
Santa Barbera Museum of Art
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Museum of Photography, Fototeca, Havana Cuba
Stanford University Palo Alto, C
UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco, CA.
Watershed Assets, San Francisco, CA.
Summit Trail Assets, San Francisco, CA.
Max and Franchesca Applegarth
Dr. Jordan and Caroline Shlain,
Michelle and Kevin Douglas
Jim and Jean Douglas
John and Kary Chendo
Kirk and Katheran Citron
Nick and Margo Graham
Kevin and Meridee Moore
Albert and Kimberly Brooks