The Illusion of Person and Place: The Spirit of Asia by Bob Sherman

Customs House Museum • June 2 to 30

by Rebecca Pierce

Photographer and Clinical Psychologist Bob Sherman continues the series of exhibits curated by Nashville Arts Magazine for Planter’s Bank Peg Harvill Gallery at the Customs House Museum.

The Illusion of Person and Place: The Spirit of Asia by Bob Sherman consists of 23 photographs from eight different countries. About the work on view, Sherman says, “I am trying to share the beauty of the world, the scenery and the people. I hope others see a glimpse of what I see, both physically and internally.”

Saffron Swirl, Wat Trikuh, Cambodia

Saffron Swirl, Wat Trikuh, Cambodia

Though he had been interested in photography as a child, Sherman began shooting in earnest in 1974 when he toured India with a Pentax his parents had given him when he completed graduate school. That trip sparked his love of travel in Asia and his passion for photography.

By chance, the timing of the exhibit coincides with the release of his second book, The Wandering Hinjew. “It’s a book about me as a shrink, me as a photographer, and me as a person. One of the questions I had going into the book was, why do I click the shutter when I do? The moment is the same as when I am with a client. I’m waiting for an opening; that is the moment I click.”

Indian Mikvah, Varanasi, India

Indian Mikvah, Varanasi, India

The moment he releases the shutter is the foundation of his creative process. Sherman shoots full frame and crops the shot when he takes it, not after the fact. “I want everything in the shot when I shoot.”

Another striking quality of his work is rich color. That is due in part to the environments he photographs. “In the third-world countries in the east, the poorest of women are wearing the brightest colors, and that’s not my doing. That’s what’s going on. I’m attracted to the quality of light and the color temperature. I don’t shoot from 9 to 4 because the light is too white. I prefer yellows and oranges.”

The Illusion of Person and Place: The Spirit of Asia by Bob Sherman is on view at the Customs House Museum in Clarksville from June 2 to 30. On Saturday, June 13, from 6 until 8 p.m. Nashville Arts Magazine’s publisher, Paul Polycarpou, is leading an artist’s talk with Sherman. For more information, visit www.customshousemuseum.org. To see more of Bob Sherman’s photography, go to www.bobshermanphotography.com.

Puja Sunrise, Varanasi, India

Puja Sunrise, Varanasi, India

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