Jess T. Dugan, "I Want You to Know My Story"

Richard Speer, VAS Visual Art eNewsletter, December 16, 2023
At first glance, the hushed intimacy of Jess T. Dugan’s portraits might seem ill-suited to [CONTAINER]’s soaring, two-story atrium, an adjunct to Turner Carroll’s long-established Canyon Road flagship. Since its inception a year ago, [CONTAINER] has played host to sprawling sculptural and new-media shows, most recently Matt King’s phantasmagorical “Becoming Light,” whose Meow Wolf-themed exhibition design had no problem filling the cavernous inner courtyard and mezzanine. A judiciously tasteful install, however, has transformed the gestalt. The gallery feels compact, even cozy, while still fully utilizing the ambitious 20-by-40-foot entry wall. That wall has been painted a calming charcoal gray, subtly grounding ten of Dugan’s photographic prints, installed in an irregular pattern, recalling the casual offhandedness of a scrapbook.