In an effort to define his complex attitude toward the rural Illinois landscape where he grew up and discovered that he was gay in a decidedly straight society, Dave Kube went back to his roots and came up with a series of lucid color autumn photographs of fields, barns, grain elevators, scrubland and signage in which the subject is firmly centered so that we are drawn to reflect on its significance. Across his varied subjects, Kube’s series is unified by the visual movement between openness and closure, which is a metaphor for the ambivalence he feels about a place in which he was restricted yet was also an affirming part. In “Open Relationship,” the subject is the empty space, framed by two grain elevators, which opens out into an expansive horizon. In “Intersexed,” a guard rail blocking a dirt road, with a sign behind it displaying an arrow pointing left and right, symbolizes the possibilities that Kube was not able to actualize. Kube’s images are arresting without the meanings that impelled them; knowing the subtext makes them even more powerful. (Michael Weinstein)
Through November 6 at Park Schreck Gallery, 1747 West North.