Two years ago, Alabama artist Terry Strickland invited a group of friends over to her house for a special party. When the guests arrived, they were asked some questions, which can be assumed to have been something like, "What do you want to be when you grow up? Who are you when the lights go out, when no one is looking? Are you wearing a disguise right now? If not, what disguise would you most like to wear; if yes, then who's hiding in there? Who do you want to be?" Strickland then directed the group to a pile of costumes, and what resulted was an all-day photo-shoot in which Strickland collected images of her friends dressed as their alter egos. These reference photos became the basis for The Incognito Project, a series of paintings which Strickland will debut later this year at the Art Folk Gallery in Birmingham, Alabama.
To commemorate the Incognito exhibition, Strickland has decided to print an accompanying book featuring the twenty-five paintings in the show. Written from the perspective of Strickland's own alter ego, a film-noir style detective, the book will be organized like a police case file, and cover the individuals participating in the masquerade from the initial photo-shoot through the completion of each of the portraits. Every painting is to be presented in a high resolution image, accompanied by close-up details, with commentary on the work written by the creative team at Matter Deep Publishing (the Strickland family's own small and independent publishing house). Graham Boettcher, PhD Yale University and Curator of American Art at the Birmingham Museum of Art has written the introduction to the collection.
The Incognito Project book has been designed and is ready to go, but has not yet been printed - there is still a shortage in the funds needed to finance this undertaking. This is where Terry Strickland can use your help.
Strickland and her daughter-in-law Amy (the art director of Matter Deep Publishing) have started a Kickstarter pledge page to generate the remaining amount needed to publish the book. If this is something you would like to see come to fruition, then help a fellow-artist out and donate to the book's production. Any amount is helpful - a single dollar will even earn you your mention in the book's credits. For $50, you can also pre-order the limited-edition book signed and hand numbered by Strickland from the Kickstarter page, and save 33% off the projected retail price.
Please visit The Incognito Project pledge page to see the full list of Thank You gifts available at the different donation levels.
Strickland's exhibition of The Incognito Project will take place at the Art Folk Gallery, Young & Vann Building, 1731 First Avenue North, in Birmingham, Alabama. The show opens November third.