Artscope editors published a write-up about ¨The Bears¨ exhibition in their email blast. Click here to read more.
The Bears at Chazan Family Gallery
in Providence, Rhode Island now through February 27
What does it mean to be a rugby girl? Is there such a thing as a rugby girl? Or are there just girls who play rugby? Photographer Alejandra Carles-Tolra examines these questions and extrapolates the answers in her exhibition The Bears on viewnow through Friday, February 27th in the Chazan Family Gallery at Rhode Island College. The exhibition features a series of photographs portraying women who are a part of Brown University's rugby team. Carles-Tolra works to explore the relationship between individual and group identity, and how the latter shapes the former. Questions regarding what defines it, the role the surroundings play and the threshold between individual and group identity drive and inform her work as an artist. This exhibition features young women who, while being a part of an intellectually exigent environment, have also decided to join a very physically demanding sport—a sport that will introduce them to a community that not only challenges them to push their limits as athletes, but also strengthens them mentally and emotionally. Through these portraits, Carles-Tolra aims to bring a broader understanding to her subjects' group identity. Women who join the sport are commonly pictured to fit a masculine stereotype, and in these photographs Carles-Tolra hopes to enhance the dualities that define the sport and the athletes: violence and grace, weakness and strength, masculine and feminine. Alejandra Carles-Tolra is a Spanish photographer from Barcelona, Spain, living in the US East Coast. She received a BA in Sociology from the University of Barcelonaand an MFA in Photography at Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Her work has been published and exhibited internationally, most recently at CNN, Photo Center NW in Seattle, Valid Foto BCN Gallery in Barcelona, and The New York Photo Festival. She has received several awards and mentions and has taught photography at The University of New Hampshire, Bryant University and Massachusetts College of Art and Design, among other institutions.