September 13, 2021 – October 29, 2021 all-day
The Courtroom Gallery @ Gettys
201 E Main St. Rock Hill
2nd floor


exhibit overview

Reflective photographic portraits by Rebecca Jacobs.

exhibition statement


At the beginning of March 2020, the world was thrown into the confusion, loss, and heartache of a global pandemic, and a period of quarantine began (gradually, in some ways—in others, all at once). Everyone who could be was at home, all of us staying inside to protect each other and ourselves as we began to navigate the unknowns. I started seeing other photographers coping with not being able to work or take normal pictures by photographing their subjects “at six feet” (the mandated physical distance necessary to reduce transmission), however that looked for them. Typically it involved shooting portraits through the protection of a window, or from an obvious distance, or through the screened-in door of a front porch. I realized that in my community of people here in Rock Hill, almost everyone I know has an amazing front or back porch (we are in the South, after all, where the ethos and practicality of the porch has existed for centuries), and there was no reason why I couldn’t do the same.

Porches are a liminal space, an in-between, a transition, much like the time we find ourselves in now. They exist to connect the community and the home, public and private, the outside world and our interior lives. They are a safe shelter and an open invitation to dialogue and chance meetings. A way for us to connect when right now there are few safe ways to do so. They can be a stage that we act out our daily dramas on, or a raft that keeps us afloat. During this time of social upheaval, political unrest, uncertainty, and fear, we have been asking the questions of who we are, where are we going, and what do we actually want that to look like? We’ve all lost something during this time, safety and stability among them. What do we grab onto when our world is falling away? How do we make a place for ourselves when we are confined to one place? There are no easy answers.

One can use a porch simply as a means to get from one place to another, without ever slowing down long enough to find out what it offers. Sitting in these transitional places can be excruciating, which is opposite of the restful state that porch sitting typically evokes. Andrew Jackson Downing, the visionary landscape architect who helped promote the proliferation of the front porch in the 19th century, wrote that even the simplest form of architecture should be an expression of utility but also beauty. “[In] perfect architecture no principle of utility will be sacrificed to beauty, only elevated and ennobled by it”. While we have been stripped down to a utilitarian mode of existence right now, my hope is that we will emerge from this time having found both the useful and the beautiful things, the work and the rest, the communication and communion that we need in order to move forward and create a better future.



Rebecca Jacobs is a fine art photographer who seeks to understand and portray the fragile undertones of everyday life, and loves pushing the traditional definitions of what photography encompasses in the process. Born in Atlanta in 1991, she graduated with her BFA in Photography from Winthrop University in 2014 and now lives in Rock Hill SC. Her work has been exhibited, awarded and sold in numerous shows, including Artfields 2016 in Lake City, S.C., and Site:Brooklyn 2018, and is featured in several online and print publications. Rebecca is a member of the art collective We Also Make Art (W.A.M.A) and has participated in several shows with the group, including OFF-BRAND at Goodyear Arts in Charlotte, NC, in December 2019.


The Courtroom Gallery

Courtroom Gallery
Gettys Art Center
201 E Main Street
2nd Floor

Gettys Art Center hours:
Monday – Friday | 9 AM – 5 PM

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