September 29 - November 5, 2016
"The Restless Planet: Earth’s Many Moods"
Curated by: Power Boothe
During my career in photography people were usually the subjects of both the pictures I shot as a photographer and published as an editor. Several years ago I had a Traumatic brain injury and found I was no longer able to function as an author, something I had been doing for about a decade. This brought me back to taking photographs, and I became fascinated by the idea of unpopulated landscapes. Instead of photographing the inhabitants of earth I concentrated on the planet itself. This is the land as it may have been before we crawled out of the sea, and as it may be when the last humans leaves.
One thing I quickly learned was that the earth is both eternal and ever-changing. Standing in the same spot the landscapes will alter dramatically for as long as you observe it – light changes, weather changes, the seasons change. We falsely assign human emotions to these changes describing one area as harsh and forbidding, another as welcoming, when what we’re really saying is, this is how we emotionally react to our environment.
A feature of this change process in which I’m becoming increasingly interested is human ruins, If you look at the destroyed temples around Ankor Wat in Cambodia you witness the power of the jungle over human pride and industry, a process I find very moving. My next photographic project will concentrate on ruins, the evidence of our constant endeavor and its vulnerability to the power of nature.
“The Florence Series"
Inspiration for this series of drawings and prints is the result of a months-long residency in Florence in February of 2014. With its rich history and beautiful surrounding countryside, Florence was both captivating and seductive. The early spring-like atmosphere provided an overlay of dramatic and constantly changing light. With every step, the architecture, gardens and rich patinas of facades entranced me.
I took long walks daily with my sketchbook in hand. Drawing focused me. Some destinations were pre-determined, but most often I just enjoyed my open hours to explore. Even as I walked on the last evening of my stay, I had hardly scratched the surface of the many levels of this richly endowed treasure of a city.
Upon returning home, little did I know how the spell of this experience had motivated me. In the two years since, I have been absorbed working on mixed media drawings and prints of my Italian experience. I usually start my drawing with a gestural ink line upon which I build tonal overlays with charcoal and colored pencil. The oil monotypes in this exhibit are based on these drawings.
“The Way Station”
The imagery that I use explores a hypothetical intersection between the natural world and the built environment. I am interested in a representation of the natural world that is spun from a conflation of imagination and ideology – a symbolic rendering – rather than one that mimics our visual/optical experience of it. I am interested in the tenuous and temporary fit with which the things we have built have accommodated themselves to the fecund and resurgent and violent forces of the natural world around them. My pictures suggest landscapes captured in a state of flux, landscapes on the cusp or in the throes of explosive generation or devolution, they are geographies of entropy and zero-sum gain.