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OUT AND ABOUT / PHOTO EXHIBIT

Pieces of a Puzzle Come Together

October 13, 1994|CHRISTINA V. GODBEY

The third time will be the charm for Nancy Goss.

The first time her works were scheduled to go on display at Santa Monica College, the curator of the Photo Gallery was fired and the show was postponed. The second time, the Northridge earthquake hit and damage to SMC caused another delay. Starting Monday, the exhibit, titled "Nancy Goss Photo Montages," is scheduled to finally open, continuing through Nov. 10 in the Photo Gallery in the foyer of the SMC Library.

Goss presents an unusual exhibit that contains 15 works. Most are 6 feet by 7 feet and are unframed, making them "earthquake friendly."

Using a technique that combines photography and images of statues, living figures, animals and nature, Goss creates art that is distinctive and thought-provoking. To create photo montages, she uses black-and-white film to shoot various images before making prints on lithofilm paper. Then she decides what type of image to create.

Working from her studio in a renovated barn in North Hills, she puts the pieces of the puzzle together and uses a special paint to seal and protect her works.

"The most enjoyable (part) is building (the montages)," she said. "It's like a puzzle until it's done."

Goss, who grew up in Carbondale, Ill., developed an interest in art as a child. She holds a bachelor of fine arts degree from the University of New Mexico and a master's degree from UC Santa Barbara.

The North Hills artist said that, when younger, she was frequently influenced by other artists' work. Over the years, she has worked to develop her own style. Goss believes her inspiration comes from within or from sources close to home, such as friends, music, books and dreams.

"I get a lot of feelings from dreams, (from) which I try to extract a kernel of meaning that can be translated into a static visual image," she said. "In return, images from my work find their way into my dreams, so that they both end up influencing each other."

Her artistic efforts have not gone unnoticed. Her work has been exhibited in such shows as "Photo Santa Fe" in New Mexico and "Extraordinary Perceptions" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In 1991, she received an award from the Washington State Arts Commission.

Photography Gallery, Santa Monica College Library, 17th and Pearl streets; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fridays. An opening reception will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Oct. 21. Free admission. Information: (310) 452-9289.

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