EMU Grad to Show ‘Insider’s View’ of DC

Barak Obama by Benji Myers, EMU alum
Senator Barak Obama greets admirers following a Democratic National Committee forum for presidential candidates held late November 2007 in Arlington, Va. Photo by Benjamin Myers

A 2005 EMU graduate now living and working in Washington, D.C., will exhibit black and white photographs at his alma mater the month of January.

Benjamin J. Myers, who earned a bachelor of science degree in art with concentration in photography, will present “Behind Closed Doors: An Insider’s Look at the Nation’s Capitol,” through his photographs that are printed on 16″ x 21″ aluminum sheets to give the images a silver finish.

The Landisville, Pa., native says his exhibit “intends to portray an alternate look at the political world of Washington, D.C.” He is currently living in Arlington, Va., and is a photo editor for “The Hill” newspaper, which is published four times a week for lawmakers, lobbyists and political staff members.

Benji Myers, EMU alum
Myers, pictured here while a senior at EMU, says his “goal is to show different perspectives than what the media typically portrays.”

“My goal is to show different perspectives than what the media typically portrays by including not only a primary subject but also its surrounding context,” he states. “By including context, the viewer is given more information about the event captured by the photo itself.”

For example, a photograph taken from behind Lee Hamilton and James Baker whispering to each other at the release of the Iraq Study Group Report demonstrates their collective effort in not only producing the report but also in its release.

With hundreds of people, cameras, and video cameras surrounding them, this image captures an intimate moment shared between Hamilton and Baker. The photograph, taken from behind, “accentuates the secretiveness and exclusiveness of that moment,” according to Myers.

Myers’ photographs also demonstrate the humanness of influential people at the Capitol.

By including photographs of up-close facial expressions during an event, a celebrity being photographed, as well as arranged portraits, this exhibit attempts to capture the many ways in which they are portrayed by the media.

An opening reception for Myers will be held 2:30-4 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, in the gallery.

The gallery, on third floor of EMU’s Hartzler Library, will be open for viewing during regular library hours through Feb. 1, when the exhibit will close. Admission is free.

Hartzler Library hours:

  • Monday – Thursday: 7:45 a.m. – 12 midnight
  • Friday: 7:45 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Saturday: 12 noon – 6 p.m.
  • Sunday: 2 p.m. – 12 midnight