Statement for Kim Du Boise's "Vehicle Visions" Series
have had a love affair, or at least a fascination, with the automobile
since Henry Ford introduced his first one. Over the past decades,
we have changed them as our tastes and fashions have taken different
turns. The car has gotten faster; bigger, then smaller; with more
or less chrome depending on the owner’s fancy, and with very shiny
exteriors. Colors have gone from black, white and red, to turquoise,
green and even one color called “tangerine,” which was orange.
Status symbol, luxury item or basic transportation, we use them
to get around and to express ourselves.
own sense about cars began, as it always does I guess, with the
fact that it gave me a certain amount of freedom and independence.
I got my first car for my sixteenth birthday − a used, dark
navy blue Impala. I wasn’t allowed to have a “sports” car −
it was too small and potentially unsafe. So, I wasn’t the coolest
kid, but it was so much better than driving the family’s farm truck
around. Besides, it could hold the whole first string of my basketball
team, so we used it a lot! So, I suppose I was “cool” enough.
got a taste of my first classic car exhibit as an event in a larger
festival in Alabama. I was surprised to see some vehicles as “classics”
or “antiques” that had graced some family and friends’ garages while
I was growing up! I learned that vehicles get this designation
after only twenty-five years. The vehicles there ranged from Model
“A” Fords to older Pontiac and Chevy coupes. One could get close
and peer into them. These vehicles were beautifully shiny and had
reflective surfaces that mirrored their surroundings.
shapes, lines, angles and surfaces drew me in and the reflections
were, at times, like looking at fun house mirrors. I could be very
short and dumpy, or tall and very thin. I was even able to bend
where I did not have joints! The compositions called to me to capture
them. I got the idea of creating a self-portrait study in a larger
body of work which depicts something entirely different at first
glance − a series of views of cars, as one might see them
series began about eight years ago and continues to grow. It has
become a game to see and make the best, most intriguing composition
possible and still put at least a part of me in the image somewhere.
Today, the self-portraits are, at times, less evident than in some
of the earlier images. Still, it is a fascination that is as human
and real and American as apple pie.
Kim Du Boise, 2002
work from the series: