The exhibit's most compelling pieces are done by UNC Charlotte Associate Professor for Digital Media/Digital Photography Jeff Murphy. Beginning with original landscape photos, Murphy then digitally layers other photos —decaying bird carcasses and his son's toys are recurring images – and charcoal drawings atop them in a collage. Those images are then printed on large sheets of sateen cotton cloth, some of which are coated, almost batik-like, in thick layers of archival art wax. The results are monochromatic mementos mori that recall the sand-blasted scenery from the film version of Cormac McCarthy’s post-apocalyptic The Road. But the sepia tones and imagery create an atmosphere that also suggests, as Murphy says in his on-line artist statement, our efforts to "calibrate our place in both a personal and historical trajectory by excavating clues to our past." In this respect, the fossilizing birds and artifacts swallowed by the sea form a record of the marks we leave behind as much as they remind us of our mortality.
From Mad Hatters to Pixel Pushers
by John Schacht
Charlotte Viewpoint Magazine
The gallery walls are adorned with nearly 20 magnificently lush, large-scale digital images by Jeff Murphy. Murphy's mesmerizing re-interpretation of Judeo-Christian subjects are imbued with a creepy yet humorous surrealism as gigantic fruits and vegetables replace primary players in ancient holy dramas.
From Technological Affectations
by Melissa Link
These ingenious films simulate an experience of being immersed in a three-dimensional environment...which are augmented by eerie soundtracks.
Murphy's work is visually striking and thematically provacative in its use of a richly nuanced collage technique.
From Nothing Sacred
by Tom Patterson
If you can't be bothered by all this intellectualism let me just say that Murphy's digitized photographs, printed on acetate and mounted on lightboxes, can be enjoyed for their beauty alone, sans analysis.
From Art's message: Technology is not Truth
by Jane Grau
Murphy's works are entertainingly complex, ironically sacred dramas featuring inextricable devices with indecipherable uses...Murphy, a North Carolina professor of electronic media, has produced what he calls "an electronic colonization of the sublime," and it's far from certain that he's comfortable with this situation.
Review of Embedded: Living With Technology
by James W. Mahoney
Even at its most disturbing, Murphy's work is visually compelling and hints at some interesting questions about science, religion, art history, and electronic media. The images are fascinating and invite close examination, but the meaning of their content is harder to grasp. If we could fulfill the desire to peel back the layers of these morbid juxtapositionings, what would we find? Brilliant technique can easily give the illusion of rich content. The best route to explore these visual offerings is to let the mind roam freely, and dive into Murphy's disturbingly evocative dreams.
by Linda Luise Brown