Hamrick honored in Oxford American

Mar 22, 2012 | General News, Liberal Arts

Louisiana Tech’s School of Art assistant professor Frank Hamrick has snapped himself into the Oxford American “100 Under 100: The New Superstars of Southern Art.” Hamrick, a native of Georgia, said this achievement means a lot to him. “The writer David Clark said if you do something long enough, and do it well, then eventually people will start to notice,” Hamrick said. “This would imply I am doing something right.” Hamrick is known for his black and white photographs, although he does shoot in color. He said black and white pictures tend to be the most universal for views. “I photograph my family, because they are important to me,” Hamrick said. “A photographer friend of mine, Christine Shank, once said the most personal artwork is often the most universal. Since my undergraduate years in college, I gave myself the challenge of photographing my family in such a way that strangers could get something from looking at my family photographs, even though they have no connection to the people photographed.” As far as a favorite photographer goes, Hamrick said he does not one. He does however like the photographs in Kelli Connell’s book, “Double Life.” “She juried our student art exhibition this year and will be giving a lecture about her work at the end of the month,” Hamrick said. “Her photography is thought-provoking and makes the viewer ask questions.” Hamrick said this he feels great about this acknowledgement, yet he has to remain humble. “I know numerous talented Southern artists who are not on that list,” Hamrick said. “I am on that list because Oxford American asked established, respected artists to each recommend an up-and-coming artist the magazine and their readers should be paying attention to.” He said Jim Sherraden, from Hatch Show Print in Nashville, Tenn., who recently displayed his work at Tech, recommended Hamrick and has recently stayed in touch with Hamrick. “I was fresh in his mind when they asked,” Hamrick said. “I might not have been on that list if they had asked someone other than Sherraden, or if they asked Sherraden six months earlier or later. The timing worked out in my favor that I have been producing artwork and making sure people are aware of it.” The article stated that Hamrick shoots a lot of black and white photos as well as the house in Georgia where he grew up. Hamrick said some of his strongest photographs are on subjects where he has a deep emotional connection. “I know the land and people there had an influence on me as a person,” he said.“Returning there every year and making new photographs does something positive for me.” Hamrick’s main inspiration for his photography is objects around him. “My photography is inspired my surroundings, whatever that is at the time,” he said. “It could be my garden, my childhood home or the people around me.” Written by Sarah Brown