“Wilcox is interested in the various ways that land is marked, be it chemically, visually or textually. Taken primarily within a 5-mile radius of Newark, NJ, these haunting, enigmatic images suggest multiple narratives, hinting at crime, destruction and violence. Artist and critic Tim Maul writes: â€œprogressâ€ has rendered these landscapes ancient, and Wilcox is both a cartographer and guerrilla, staging interventions embedded within photographs that like maps themselves, never succeed as precise conveyors of â€œtruthâ€. The images bear no obvious time stamp; they serve as a subjective document and challenge the notion of evidence. Though often dark, both visually and conceptually, the work has an underlying note of resilience and perseverance.”
Elena John, Gitterman Gallery
Arrested Development, catalog essay by Eva Diaz for Salvage Rights
Interview on Art International Radio by William Corwin with Evonne M. Davis, on Gallery Aferro and Newark
Interview on WNPR by John Dankosky on eminent domain issues for Salvage Rights exhibition
“For the past several years, Emma Wilcox has lovingly combed the New Jersey landscape in search of scenery that is simultaneously intimate, disquieting, melancholic, discordant and, above all, exquisitely beautiful. Through her lens, a family of rabbits living in an abandoned car is enlivened by light and texture, the rabbits glowing through the car’s dark window. Borrowing her sensibilities from both documentary and pictorial photography, her images are a careful blending of authenticity and the surreal.
More that mere representation, Ms. Wilcox is interested in the individual elements that make up a scene and how they infuse our perception of it with meaning. Climbing around the NJ Transit rail tracks, combing abandoned industrial buildings in Newark, exploring marginal spaces, she carefully considers each location for its insinuated story. Her images carefully document the fragile and fleeting presence of all things, and allude to the various narratives the viewer’s eye may encounter in a single image.”
RocÃo Aranda-Alvarado, Jersey City Museum