Sacred Sister

Deep in the jungles of Bali, Burma, Vietnam and Indonesia, the artist Bettina WitteVeen has conducted an extraordinary seven-year project to find the face of legend in the peoples of today. The result is Sacred Sister, a powerful group of 100 stunning images that capture the strength of womanhood in a global context, wherein ancient myth and the medium of photography join to create an arresting meditation on timeless female power.

Pursuing the theme of the "sacred sister" to the far corners of Asia, WitteVeen has succeeded in bringing together deep-rooted beliefs and the spiritual life of real women in our time, if not our own culture. The series has a string central theme, nothing less than epic scope, that finds universal significance in a deeply held belief in the significance of the universe. This center holds together dynamic images of young and old women, trance dancers and weavers, priestesses and innocent young girls -all captured by the lens if a practicing Buddhist. WitteVeen has produced a series of photographs that serve as a contemporary perspective of the mythology of the sexes.

In collaboration with designer Robert Wilson, one of the major figures of avant garde, WitteVeen presents her work as seven discrete series, each one exploring a theme from either Greek mythology (the Three Fates, Amazons, Hectate and Medusa) or Asian spirituality (Tara or Guan Yin). The exhibition includes an extensive documentary record of Robert Wilson's creation of an exhibition space for the photographs that will tour the world, his first project of this kind. It is accompanied by a fascinating and accessible interpretive essay by Charles A. Riley II, that serves to illuminate the ideas explored through WitteVeen's art.

It is the artist's hope that seeing this series of images will guide the viewer in recognizing and accepting the mutual psychological characteristics present in all of us, and aid in nurturing and hearing in this time of tremendous conflict in the world.

There are seven separate components to the exhibition. Each component is an installation in itself with a fixed number of photographs and a fixed narrative structure and introduced by a text panel.

-Gary Chassman