Photo gallery showcases photos by Samarkand residents
Scenes of eye-catching landscapes, sunswept beaches and overseas excursions are providing a snapshot of pre-pandemic life for residents at Covenant Living at the Samarkand, where a gallery of their iPhone photos are currently on display.
The gallery consists of more than 80 photos taken by residents at all levels of care at Covenant Living. Residents at the Santa Barbara facility used their iPhones or other smart devices to take photos, capturing scenes across Santa Barbara and beyond.
This project, spearheaded by Jodi Turley, activities coordinator at Covenant Living, was initially set to debut in March 2020. But due to the pandemic, the gallery has been closed until its reopening this past week.
The gallery featuring the special photos will remain open through April 29.
The photos that have hung in the facility’s conference room for more than a year bring back cherished memories of the pre-pandemic past and have a “time warp” effect, Ms. Turley told the News-Press. A number of photos showcase residents’ adventures across the U.S. and abroad, a luxury that has been barred for over a year now.
“It’s like walking into a time machine looking at these photos that have been hung over a year,” Ms. Turley said. “All the photos were taken before we were wearing masks and before the shutdown.”
Ms. Turley said this exhibit also gave many residents who may not normally participate in the art galleries a chance to have their photos featured.
Samarkand holds various galleries throughout the year to showcase art from residents who enjoy pottery, painting and other creative expressions. While other showcases required specific supplies and skills, the photo exhibit required only a smart device, which many of the residents already owned.
“We thought an iPhone photo showcase would open it up to so many more residents,” Ms. Turley said.
Indeed it did. The showcase features more than 80 photos taken by about 60 residents on their iPhones.
The gallery is currently open for Samarkand residents and their families to enjoy while wearing masks and observing social distancing. For many of the participants, seeing their work on display has given them a great sense of pride, Ms. Turley said.
“I’ve heard residents who never thought they’d see any of their work or photos or anything displayed in that room say they were delighted to be able to see it,” she said.
In addition to the memory-evoking power of the photos, Ms. Turley said the exhibit is also creating a new sense of hope among residents that life as they once knew it may not be so far away.
“Just going back (to the exhibit) and thinking wow that over a year ago and kind of reminiscing on the times when they took the photos and when they were traveling brings promise now that they’ll be able to see (those scenes) again,” Ms. Turley said. “We’ll get back there. It’s inspiring.”