Planet Akron, 2014 and 2018
Materials: Digital print on canvas 48" x 48”.
Location at Summa Health: Dr. Gary B. and Pamela S. Williams Tower on the Akron Campus (141 N. Forge St.), blue neighborhood, fifth floor, opposite family lounge overlooking downtown Akron.
This striking image takes a dramatic night view of the Akron skyline and winds it into a spiral, creating the “planet” of the title.
Joe Levack’s composite image is especially fun when the beholder recognizes these two separately created digital images and tries to figure out how the skyline became a planet: The prominent verticals of taller buildings create an interesting contour and are precisely fitted to the (outer) circle. The photographer then takes the North Hill Viaduct and winds it into a tight spiral, its railings illumined by streetlights to create an emphatic line that we trace with pleasure into the center of the planet. There, in the center, we recognize that Levack has drawn other features of the nocturnal cityscape, dotted with white and red lights, into the center, as well. He mirrors some of them and stretches them as if made of elastic and being sucked into a vortex, another sci-fi effect that resonates with movie buffs and anyone interested in black holes. Levack has given us a mirror of Akron as we experience it, along the baseline of this image, as well as an evocative, cosmic fantasy fabricated from the familiar and connected to other “Planet XXX” logos.
Levack is an award-winning commercial photographer with Studio Akron, as well as his own business, and has a range of corporate clients for whom he produces both print and digital/web images. He has also done photography for the Akron Art Museum and the National Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.) and has documented the art and artists involved in the Curated Storefront project in Akron.
Where you can see more of this artist’s work:
You can see some of Levack’s photographs in the Summa Health Foundation offices on the Akron campus, as well as on his website, which mixes both artistic and commercial production.