2008 Art in Nature Exhibition
The images were selected by juror, George Lepp.
George D. Lepp is one of North America's best-known contemporary outdoor and nature photographers. His passions for natural beauty, technical precision, cutting-edge technology, and environmental responsibility are revealed in his beautiful and compelling photographic images. Lepp's images have appeared in some of the world's most widely viewed venues, including National Wildlife, Time, Newsweek, and The New Yorker.
The Art in Nature Exhibition will be on display at The Center for Fine Art Photography from
December 5th - January 3rd, 2009.
I like to look at the world in the manner described by William Blake:
To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.
'Blue Sky' is an expression of such an experience. 'Blue Sky' is a color infrared photograph of a marsh in Northern Virginia. I came upon this scene and was just stunned by the simple beauty.
The thing that really grabbed me at a visceral level was the play between the water in the marsh and the sky - as if there was no real separation between the two - a unity of apparent duality - a merging of different realities. I felt that I was looking into infinity - there were no 'boundaries' between land and sky - between real and unreal.
I have always been fascinated by the play between duality and unity - conscious/unconscious, reality/dreams, enlightenment/delusion, self/nonself, life/death, and have explored them in many ways including through zen buddhism.
I explore duality and unity with photography via play of contrast, ambiguity and metaphor. Speeding trains are thoughts, reflections complete expressions of duality, shadows sweep forms, water drops shelter universes, colors whisper and clouds play.
I sometimes wonder, in the context of buddhism, whether we are just seeing ourselves when when seeing such beauty.
2008 "Our Environment; the Good, Bad, and the Ugly" Exhibition.
The Center for Fine Art Photography is pleased to announce the juror's selections for the
2008 Our Environment; the Good, Bad, and the Ugly Exhibition. November 7th, 2008.
The images were selected by juror, Robert Glenn Ketchum.
Mr. Ketchum’s photography and writing have focused public attention on complex issues of environmental politics, while at the same time helping to define contemporary color photography. He has received many awards including the United Nations Outstanding Environmental Achieve Award and the Ansel Adams Award for Conservation Photography.
'Narcissus'is an image about mankind's stewardship of the earth. It is about greed, selfishness, and self-delusion. It is also about the nature of self and duality.
I originally designed the composite image to be a play on the Narcissus story from Greek mythology, wherein water is in love with itself. I added the image within the mirror to render a judgement on mankind's stewardship of earth.
I have always believed that all is interconnected and that while there is a duality between ourselves and 'reality' on one level, there is unity at other levels.
In that context, the mirror and the reflected image within point to a duality - the hand and arm formed from the earth signify that there is no real duality, that all life is connected.
The image within the mirror is an ultraviolet time-lapse image of New Orleans taken from a streetcar. The image represents a perverse beauty that is our self-delusion - and the reality, which is the horror of our treatment of earth, in this case, a nuclear holocaust.
'Narcissus' is a statement that that we are hurting ourselves when we hurt the environment. It is a challange for us to see ourselves as we are.
My God, it's full of Stars
"Edgy" Exhibition: Pushing the Limits of Photographic Art: May 2 - May 31, 2008.
Edgy presents images that are conceptually modern, make a statement, visually provocative and will stop the audience in their tracks. This exhibition consists of fifty-five photographers representing Canada, Finland, France, India, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Serbia and the United States.
Michael Itkoff was the juror. Michael is a fine art photographer as well as the founding editor of Daylight Magazine. Itkoff’s photographs are included in public and private collections throughout United States.
"My God, it's full of Stars" is the famous line from "2001, a Space Odyssey." The idea that consciousness is infinite, unfathomable and ageless and that belief in our own personal reality is futile, is the basis for this image.
The stars and face correspond to infinity and finite reality, respectively. The peeling paint represents the peeling back of the illusion as well as inevitable decay of finite life.
There is a dynamic play in the image - going into the image and coming back out again - a play between the gaze directed out at the viewer, the tenuous veil of a face, and the stars within.
I provoke the viewer to complete the image and bring it alive. The viewer is initially presented
with a puzzle - the decaying face, an enigmatic expression and the stars within. Then a split second of terror when the viewer confronts the enigmatic expression, the gaze, and the infinity behind it, and realizes that the person does not exist - there is nothing to grasp onto. I want the viewer to experience a timeless infinity looking back through the eyes of the face. At the same time, the penetrating gaze and enigmatic expression challenges the viewer to solve the puzzle.
Eventually surprise - there is no separation between the viewer and the stars - the viewer is looking into a mirror - and the decaying face is that of the viewer.
Juried Tony Sweet
- technique: macro imaging of still life through water drops
- subject: the poem by William Blake - Auguries of Innocence
I had a Kodak Brownie camera as a child. I taped it to a microscope and a telescope and started exploring. What fun! But I pursued other things including degrees in psychology and engineering, Buddhism, relationships and work, and forgot about photography until recently. And then everything clicked. I now know that the degrees and other life experiences were just finishing school for photography.
Kertez has been a big influence on me. A teacher challenged me to extend his work into color and other areas. That thought has never left me.
My approach is that of child-like exploration - seeing with an open heart. I discover and develop themes and techniques by asking a lot of “what ifs”.
The theme for me has always been about duality and unity - conscious/unconscious, reality/dreams, enlightenment/delusion, self/nonself, etc. Photography is a psychological tool; the image is a self-portrait.
I explore and express these ideas via contrast, ambiguity and metaphor. Speeding trains are thoughts and memories, reflections complete expressions of duality, shadow sweeps form, water drops contain universes. Bottles dance, shapes come alive, colors whisper, peppers raise periscopes and clouds play.
To express these ideas, I use time lapse and macro photography; infrared, UV, pinhole and zoneplate imaging; panning and out-of-focus techniques, and sabbatier treatment of film and polaroid negatives.
This is my approach – there is no meaning for “Yellow Submarine”. It was a magical moment recorded without thought or intent. I hope it is magical for you as well.
When Clouds Play
When Clouds Play
- honorable mention, juried, Andrew Darlow
- technique: infrared, time lapse photography of trains in Crystal City, VA
- subject: metaphorical study of thoughts